SFC WILLIAM MAUD BRYANT,
Co. A, 5th Special Forces Group
Long Khanh Province, RVN
24 March 1969
SFC Bryant was in command of a Civilian Irregular Defense Group when the unit came under attack from an enemy force consisting of three Regiments.
SFC. Bryant proved himself on several occasions during the 34-hour battle. He moved throughout the company position under intense hostile fire while checking and improving the defensive perimeter, while directing fire during critical phases of the battle, distributing ammunition, assisting the wounded.
When a helicopter drop came in hot, SFC. Bryant with complete disregard for his safety ran through the heavy enemy fire to retrieve the scattered ammunition boxes and distribute ammunition to his men.
SFC. Bryant led a patrol outside the perimeter to obtain information of the enemy. The patrol came under intense automatic weapons fire and was pinned down. SFC. Bryant single-handedly repulsed the enemy attack and inspired his men to fight off other assaults.
Seeing a wounded enemy soldier some distance from the patrol location, SFC. Bryant crawled forward alone under heavy fire to retrieve the soldier for intelligence purposes. Finding that the enemy soldier had expired, SFC. Bryant crawled back to his patrol and led his men back to the company position where he again took command of the defense. As the siege continued, SFC. Bryant organized and led a patrol in a daring attempt to break through the enemy encirclement.
The patrol had advanced some 200 meters by heavy fighting when it was pinned down by the intense automatic weapons fire from heavily fortified bunkers and SFC. Bryant was severely wounded.
Despite his wounds he rallied his men, called for helicopter gunship support, and directed heavy suppressive fire upon the enemy positions. Following the last gunship attack, SFC. Bryant fearlessly charged an enemy automatic weapons position, overrunning it, and single-handedly destroying its 3 defenders. Inspired by his heroic example, his men renewed their attack on the entrenched enemy. While regrouping his small force for the final assault against the enemy, SFC. Bryant fell mortally wounded by an enemy rocket.