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In response to reliable intelligence, Lieutenant (j.g.) Kerrey led his SEAL team on a mission to capture important members of the enemy’s area political cadre located on an island in the bay of Nha Trang. In order to surprise them he and his team scaled a 350-foot sheer cliff to place themselves above the ledge on which the enemy was located. Splitting his team in two elements and coordinating both, he led them in the downward descent to the enemy’s camp. As they neared the bottom, intense enemy fire was directed at them, and Lieutenant (j.g.) Kerrey received massive injuries from a grenade which exploded at his feet and threw him backward onto the jagged rocks. Although bleeding profusely and suffering great pain, he immediately directed his element’s fire into the heart of the enemy camp. Utilizing his radioman, he called in the second element’s fire support which caught the confused Viet Cong in a devastating crossfire. Successfully suppressing the enemy’s fire, and although immobilized by his multiple wounds, he continued to maintain control as he ordered his team to secure an extraction site. The enemy soldiers who were captured provided critical intelligence to the allied effort.

Bob Kerrey was the first U.S. Navy SEAL to receive the Medal of Honor. Following military service he served as Governor of his home state of Nebraska from 1983 – 1987, at which time he was elected to the US Senate.  He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for President in 1992, losing to William J. Clinton.

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