George Percy Kendall, JrGunnery Sergeant
11TH INTERROGATOR TRANSLATOR TEAM, 3RD MAF
United States Marine Corps
06 February 1930 - 04 February 1968
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The database page for George Percy Kendall, Jr
On the 4th of February 1968, Marine forces, elements of the 1st and 5th Marines, were heavily engaged with a numerically superior force of North Vietnamese Army (NVA) regulars, south of the "Parfum River" in the beginning of some of the fiercest fighting of the Vietnam war. Intelligence of the enemy disposition and strength was sketchy at best. In an attempt to glean some information from locals or any NVA stragglers, an ad hoc sub-team was pulled together by Captain J. T. Irons, Team Commander of the 3d ITT attached to the 1st Marines, consisting of Irons, Sgt Tony Billups (3d ITT), an S-2 Scout, GySgt Kendall (11th ITT) and two US Army soldiers who were assigned to MAC-V. This small "patrol" headed south from the river toward the soccer stadium. In the vicinity of the stadium, Captain Irons split the unit and sent Kendall, Billups and one soldier around the West Side, while he, the scout and the other soldier went to the east. With the first burst, Irons sustained a small wound and the intense automatic weapons fire pinned down the entire unit. GySgt Kendall and Sgt Billups were now approaching the corner and observed what was taking place.
Kendall immediately moved to assist his fellow Marines, firing his weapon as he advanced. The NVA machine gunner traversed his weapon 90 degrees and took Kendall under fire, killing him with a fatal burst and wounding Billups in the leg. GySgt Kendall's action allowed Irons and his men to move to a more covered position and to lay down suppressing fire.
Despite his wounded leg, Billups ran back to the MAC-V compound for reinforcements to retrieve Kendall's body from its exposed position. It was not known until that action that the soccer stadium was being used as an NVA regimental staging and supply area. Gunny Kendall had acquitted himself quite gallantly that day. His selfless action resulted in others achieving relative safety. For his courageous initiative he was awarded the Silver Star Medal.
From an MCITTA Member.
Staff Sergeant Kendall also received a posthumous promotion to Gunnery Sergeant.
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25 Jul 2005
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 07/25/2005