spackman photo

U.S. Army First Lieutenant Philip Leslie Spackman, left, is one of 17 veterans inducted into the Georgia
Military Veterans Hall of Fame in November 2016.
PHOTO COURTESY GEORGIA MILITARY VETERANS HALL OF FAME

Jasper veteran inducted into Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame

U.S. Army First Lieutenant Philip Leslie Spackman of Jasper is one of 17 inducted into the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame in November at Ft. Benning, Columbus.

Spackman was cited for his undaunted and extraordinary heroism and numerous acts of bravery as an armored calvary assault platoon leader in Vietnam. On eight separate occasions he distinguished himself by selfless and courageous leadership resulting in a remarkable number of valor awards for his actions in combat.

The most notable of these battles occurred on July 2, 1969. As the lead armored personal carrier of his platoon crossed a stream and penetrated a hedgerow, it was struck by several North Vietnamese rocket propelled grenades and machine gun fire, seriously wounding all four of the American soldiers on board.

The enemy then began quickly moving down the stream bed in an effort to cut off the stricken vehicle from the rest of the friendly force. Without hesitation, Spackman immediately dismounted his vehicle and with total disregard for his own safety, rushed through intense enemy strafing automatic weapons fire to the aid of his wounded soldiers while simultaneously firing his weapon and killing many of the enemy attackers en-route. He then removed the casualties from further exposure to the enemy’s direct fire and carried them to a safer area across the stream. Upon remounting his track, and with focused determination, he maneuvered his remaining force on-line and then led them in an all out and unrelenting attack on the numerous well dug-in enemy positions.

When stiff resistance was encountered from one particular enemy bunker, he focused his track directly toward it resulting in totally routing the enemy and thus saving the lives of his men. For this and other similar heroic actions, he was awarded two Purple Hearts, four Bronze Star Medals for Valor, three Silver Stars, and our nation’s second highest award for valor, the Distinguished Service Cross.

 

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