Kern Wayne Dunagan

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Kern Wayne Dunagan

Birthdate: (57)
Birthplace: Superior, Pinal, AZ, USA
Death: December 27, 1991 (57)
San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA
Managed by: Shirley Marie Caulk
Last Updated:

About Kern Wayne Dunagan

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the

Medal of Honor

to Major (Infantry), [then Captain] Kern Wayne Dunagan, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as Commanding Officer, Company A, 1st Battalion, 46th Infantry Regiment, Americal Division, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Quang Tin Province, Republic of Vietnam, during the period 13 and 14 May 1969. Major Dunagan was leading an attack to relieve pressure on the battalion's forward support base when his company came under intense fire from a well-entrenched enemy battalion. Despite continuous hostile fire from a numerically superior force, Major Dunagan repeatedly and fearlessly exposed himself in order to locate enemy positions, direct friendly supporting artillery, and position the men of his company. In the early evening, while directing an element of his unit into perimeter guard, he was seriously wounded during an enemy mortar attack, but he refused to leave the battlefield and continued to supervise the evacuation of dead and wounded and to lead his command in the difficult task of disengaging from an aggressive enemy. In spite of painful wounds and extreme fatigue, Major Dunagan risked heavy fire on two occasions to rescue critically wounded men. He was again seriously wounded. Undaunted, he continued to display outstanding courage, professional competence, and leadership and successfully extricated his command from its untenable position on the evening of May 14. Having maneuvered his command into contact with an adjacent friendly unit, he learned that a six-man party from his company was under fire and had not reached the new perimeter. Major Dunagan unhesitatingly went back and searched for his men. Finding one soldier critically wounded, Major Dunagan, ignoring his wounds, lifted the man to his shoulders and carried him to the comparative safety of the friendly perimeter. Before permitting himself to be evacuated, he insured all of his wounded received emergency treatment and were removed from the area. Throughout the engagement, Major Dunagan's actions gave great inspiration to his men and were directly responsible for saving the lives of many of his fellow soldiers. Major Dunagan's extraordinary heroism above and beyond the call of duty, are in the highest traditions of the U.S. Army and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the United States Army.

General Orders: Department of the Army, General Orders No. 39 (July 23, 1971)

Action Date: May 13 & 14, 1969

Service: Army

Rank: Major

Company: Company A

Battalion: 1st Battalion

Regiment: 46th Infantry Regiment

Division: Americal Division

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Kern Wayne Dunagan's Timeline

February 20, 1934
Superior, Pinal, AZ, USA
December 27, 1991
Age 57
San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA