Arkansas
Military Veterans'
Hall of Fame

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Arkansas
Military Veterans'
Hall of Fame

LT. Colonel David Ray Wallace | Arkansas Military Veterans' Hall of Fame

LT. Colonel David Ray Wallace

Lieutenant Colonel David Wallace honorably served in the United States Army for over 20 years where he earned numerous awards and decorations including:  Army Service ribbon, Distinguished Flying Cross (3), Bronze Star Medal, Distinguished Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal (9), Air Medal with device, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Overseas Service ribbon, Overseas service bars, Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation, Air Assault Badge, and the Senior Army Aviator Badge.

 

On 9 July 1972 Lieutenant Colonel Wallace received the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism while serving in the Republic of Vietnam. The citation for his first Distinguished Flying Cross reads as follows:  for heroism while participating in aerial flight evidenced by voluntary actions above and beyond the call of duty:  First Lieutenant Wallace distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions while serving as a pilot of a cobra gunship on the emergency medical evacuation of Brigadier General Tallman and two wounded US Advisors just south of An Loc. Alerted via radio to the attack on BG Tallman’s element, Lieutenant Wallace’s fire team was diverted from a reconnaissance mission near Lai Khe and directed to link up with a Medevac aircraft headed for An Loc which was then surrounded by Massive North Vietnam Army (NVA) forces. Due to the extreme haste required to rescue BG Tallman and his staff, Lieutenant Wallace was briefed en route via a frag order over the radio. Since the extraction of BG Tallman was to be done at all costs, speed was considered the determining parameter and Lieutenant Wallace's team which now included a Medevac aircraft flew low-level nap-of-the-earth directly from An Loc to Lai Khe even though this path was considered the most vulnerable. The rescue flight received a continuous and heavy volume of 37 mm and other large caliber anti-aircraft fire along the entire route, but the element of surprise generated by the nap-of-the-earth flying and the accurate return fire from Lieutenant Wallace enabled the flight to break through NVA lines and evacuate Brigadier General Tallman and two other wounded officers. Lieutenant Wallace repeatedly suppressed enemy anti-aircraft positions threatening the Medevac aircraft thus enabling the Medevac aircraft to successfully land and extract the fallen General and two wounded officers. Later on the same day Lieutenant Wallace again accompanied a Command and Control aircraft on a different flight path, again with low-level nap-of-the-earth flyiong, and recovered the bodies of BG Tallman’s aide, Third Regeional Assistance Command’s (TRAC) Chief of Staff and the G-3 of TRAC MACV. Lieutenant Wallace’s gallantry in action was in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army

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