HOME OF RECORD:
Long Beach, California
AWARD BY DATE OF ACTION:
May 11, 1969
AWARDED FOR ACTIONS
DURING Vietnam War
Service: United States Marie Corps
Rank: Second Lieutenant
Regiment: Fifth Marines
Division: 1st Marine Division (Rein.), FMF
The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Second Lieutenant Theodore R. Vivilacqua (MCSN: 0-106177), United States Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Platoon Commander with Company H, Second Battalion, Fifth Marines, FIRST Marine Division (Rein.), FMF, in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam on May 11, 1969.
On that date, during a search and destroy operation in Quang Nam Province, Second Lieutenant Vivilacqua’s platoon came under heavy fire from a North Vietnamese Army Force occupying well-concealed, mutually supporting bunkers. Reacting instantly, Second Lieutenant Vivilacqua, ignoring the hostile rounds impacting around him, maneuvered his platoon against the bunkers and, despite the extreme heat and dense tree lines, successfully assaulted and destroyed the fortified positions.
As the engagement continued, the platoon accounted for thirteen hostile soldiers killed and captured five AK-47 rifles, sustaining no friendly casualties. Continuing his determined efforts, Second Lieutenant Vivilacqua, with complete disregard for his own safety, led his men against the hostile survivors. When his platoon’s ammunition began to run low, he aggressively pursued the retreating enemy soldiers, firing at them with captured hostile weapons. His bold initiative and heroic efforts inspired all who observed him and enabled the company to capture a fortified enemy village.
By his courage, aggressive leadership, and steadfast devotion to duty, Second Lieutenant Vivilacqua upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service.