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Western Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial

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Marc John Kuzma
Navy Cross Citation

*Kuzma, Marc J.
Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps
Co. A, 1st Bn., 4th Marines, 3rd Marine Division
Date of Action:  April 26, 1968

The Navy Cross is awarded to Private First Class Marc J. Kuzma, United States Marine Corps, for extraordinary heroism while serving as a Rifleman with Company A, First Battalion, Fourth Marines, Third Marine Division in connection with operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On 26 April 1968, Private Kuzma's squad was assigned to reconnoiter a suspected enemy bunker complex located west of Con Thien. As the Marines approached the designated area, they suddenly came under a heavy volume of hostile fire, and during the ensuing engagement, the squad's radio was severely damaged and rendered inoperable. Realizing the seriousness of the situation, Private Kuzma unhesitatingly exposed himself to the hostile fire in order to return to the platoon patrol base and guide reinforcements to the location of his besieged squad. Quickly leading the Marines to a location near the ambush site, he accurately pointed out friendly and enemy positions to his platoon commander. Disregarding his own safety, he then commenced moving toward his squad's position and, as he ran across a dangerously exposed area, came under fire from a hostile bunker. Reacting instantly, he threw a grenade into the emplacement, killing the enemy soldier defending the position. Continuing his movement, he simultaneously delivered a heavy volume of rifle fire which killed two additional North Vietnamese soldiers. Arriving at his unit's location, he was informed that several wounded Marines were lying forward of the squad's perimeter. Unhesitatingly moving toward his wounded comrades, he came under fire from another well fortified bunker. Maneuvering close to the emplacement, he threw a grenade into the position, killing another enemy soldier. Continuing toward his fallen comrades, he was again fired upon and rapidly returned accurate fire which killed the hostile soldier. Almost immediately, he received fire from his flank, and as he turned to direct fire upon the enemy he was mortally wounded. His heroic and timely actions inspired all who observed him and were instrumental in saving the lives of numerous Marines. By his courage, intrepid fighting spirit and selfless devotion to duty, Private Kuzma upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

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