Welcome to Their Finest Hour
NOTICE TO READERS – NEW BLOG LOCATION!!! Their Finest Hour has relocated to its own domain effective March 17, 2014! This page will no longer feature new posts. Just click this banner to be redirected to the new site. All content will remain here at the original location, but also has been migrated to the new site. To all my readers, thank you for all of your support and we'll see you over at the new site!
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
TFH 11/29: Staff Sergeant Robert J. Pruden, USA
Robert J. Pruden entered the United States Army in 1968. Promoted quickly, he was a member of the 75th Ranger Infantry Regiment (Airborne). On this day in 1969, his indomitable fighting spirit and courage earned for him our Nation's highest honor.
*PRUDEN, ROBERT J.
Rank and organization: Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, 75th Infantry, Americal Division. Place and date: Quang Ngai Province, Republic of Vietnam, 29 November 1969. Entered service at: Minneapolis, Minn. Born: 9 September 1949, St. Paul, Minn. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. S/Sgt. Pruden, Company G, distinguished himself while serving as a reconnaissance team leader during an ambush mission. The 6-man team was inserted by helicopter into enemy controlled territory to establish an ambush position and to obtain information concerning enemy movements. As the team moved into the preplanned area, S/Sgt. Pruden deployed his men into 2 groups on the opposite sides of a well used trail. As the groups were establishing their defensive positions, 1 member of the team was trapped in the open by the heavy fire from an enemy squad. Realizing that the ambush position had been compromised, S/Sgt. Pruden directed his team to open fire on the enemy force. Immediately, the team came under heavy fire from a second enemy element. S/Sgt. Pruden, with full knowledge of the extreme danger involved, left his concealed position and, firing as he ran, advanced toward the enemy to draw the hostile fire. He was seriously wounded twice but continued his attack until he fell for a third time, in front of the enemy positions. S/Sgt. Pruden's actions resulted in several enemy casualties and withdrawal of the remaining enemy force. Although grievously wounded, he directed his men into defensive positions and called for evacuation helicopters, which safely withdrew the members of the team. S/Sgt. Pruden's outstanding courage, selfless concern for the welfare of his men, and intrepidity in action at the cost of his life were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
Robert Pruden rests today in Fort Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis, MN. The descendant of his Vietnam Era unit, the 75th Ranger Regiment (Airborne), is a key component today of our special operations forces for the War on Terror. We are forever thankful for the courage of men like Robert Pruden, and all those who serve or have served with the Rangers.