Allen Frederick Grotzke
Specialist Four
Army of the United States
Portage, Wisconsin
August 05, 1948 to November 15, 1969
ALLEN F GROTZKE is on the Wall at Panel W16, Line 79

Allen F Grotzke
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He started his tour in Vietnam on June 20, 1969. In late October or early November 1969, the platoon was assigned a new leader, Lieutenant Mark Henry Rivest. SP4 Allen F. Grotzke was awarded the Silver Star Medal (Posthumously) for gallantry in action in the Republic of Vietnam on 15 November 1969. Specialist Grotzke distinguished himself while serving as a fire team leader near the A Shau Valley and Demilitarized Zone, Republic of Vietnam.

Company B was inserted by combat assault into a landing zone commanding a draw where a North Vietnamese Army bunker complex had been sighted by aerial observation. An element of the 2nd Platoon moved down the draw and came under intense machine gun and small arms fire from positions not more than fifty meters away.

Specialist Grotzke maneuvered his fire team along the high ground rising from the draw and flanked the bunker complex from the side and rear. Though under constant exposure to the hostile machine gun emplacement, he supervised the placing of his men in strategic rear security positions and moved forward with the remainder of the squad to eliminate the enemy position.

While passing through a clearing, Specialist Grotzke and his fellow Soldiers came under fire from a second machine gun. Two of his squad members were seriously wounded. When he saw his comrade's fall, Specialist Grotzke moved out further into the clearing and directed suppressive fire at the enemy. Although action diverted the enemy machine gun, enabling the other wounded personnel to crawl to safety.

In his isolated forward position, he continued to provide cover for his comrades and ceased firing only when wounded a second time. He was evacuated by helicopter along with the two wounded men whose lives he saved. [He died later that evening per Phil Marshall who wrote in a 2001 andcestry message board: " I was the helicopter pilot that picked them up that night and was also wounded during the rescue".]

Specialist Grotzke's personal bravery and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.

He was survived at the time by his parents, Margaret Lavern Morrow Grotzke (1922 - 2006) and Charles Albert Grotzke (1910 - 1982). They are buried in Shanks Cemetery, Portage, Columbia County, Wisconsin. In addition, he was survived by at least one brother, Bob.

Allen F Grotzke

- - The Virtual Wall, June 22, 2014

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