HSC, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines
1st Marine Division.
Fire Support Base Tomahawk
Quang Nam Province, RVN
1 March 1969

While serving as a mortar crewman PFC Bruce was on night watch in position on the bruceperimeter at fire support base tomahawk when he heard movements ahead of him.

Then an enemy explosive charge was thrown toward his position. Bruce reacted instantly, catching the device in flight and shouting to alert his companions. Realizing the size of the satchel charge would demolish the entire gun pit and likely an adjacent position.

Pfc. Bruce held the device to his body and tried to carry it from the vicinity of his fellow Marines. As ran away, the charge detonated. PFC Bruce absorbed the full force of the explosion.

His fellow Mortarman survived to fight another day.

His MOH citation put it this way:

“Pfc. Bruce’s indomitable courage, inspiring valor and selfless devotion to duty saved the lives of 3 of his fellow marines and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.”


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