Medal of Honor Recipient

Lt. Col Andre C. Lucas
2nd Battalion 506th Infantry

mohlucas.gifThe President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Lieutenant Colonel (Infantry) Andre Cavaro Lucas, 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, 2d Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Fire Support Base Ripcord, Republic of Vietnam, from 1 - 23 July 1970. Although the fire base was constantly subjected to heavy attacks by a numerically superior enemy force throughout this period, Lieutenant Colonel Lucas, forsaking his own safety, performed numerous acts of extraordinary valor in directing the defense of the allied position. On one occasion, he flew in a helicopter at treetop level above an entrenched enemy directing the fire of one of his companies for over three hours. Even though his helicopter was heavily damaged by enemy fire, he remained in an exposed position until the company expended its supply of grenades. He then transferred to another helicopter, dropped critically needed grenades to the troops, and resumed his perilous mission of directing fire on the enemy. These courageous actions by Lieutenant Colonel Lucas prevented the company from being encircled and destroyed by a larger enemy force. On another occasion, Lieutenant Colonel Lucas attempted to rescue a crewman trapped in a burning helicopter. As the flames in the. aircraft spread, and enemy fire became intense, Lieutenant Colonel Lucas ordered all members of the rescue party to safety. Then, at great personal risk, he continued the rescue effort amid concentrated enemy mortar fire, intense heat, and exploding ammunition until the aircraft was completely engulfed in flames. Lieutenant Colonel Lucas was mortally wounded while directing the successful withdrawal of his battalion from the fire base. His actions throughout this extended period inspired his men to heroic efforts, and were instrumental in saving the lives of many of his fellow soldiers while inflicting heavy casualties on the enemy. Lieutenant Colonel Lucas' conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action, at the cost of his own life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit and the United States Army.