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Sgt. David Bleak

Date of Award: November 2, 1953
Conflict: Korean War
Branch: U.S. Army

Sgt. David Bleak portraitBorn in Idaho Falls, Idaho, Sgt. David Bleak was raised on a farm on the outskirts of the city, and worked as a rancher and railroad constructor. Bleak chose to work over attending school, dropped out of high school, and later joined the Army in 1950. Selected for medical duty, Bleak was shipped to Korea and served with the Medical Company 223d Infantry Regiment, 40th Infantry Division. He stood over 6 feet tall and weighed 250 pounds, it was his sheer strength and audacious courage that saved the lives of his fellow soldiers on June 14, 1952, near Minari-gol, Korea.

Citation: “Nearing the military crest of the hill, while attempting to cross the fire-swept area to attend the wounded, he came under hostile fire from a small group of the enemy concealed in a trench. Entering the trench he closed with the enemy, killed 2 with bare hands and a third with his trench knife. Moving from the emplacement, he saw a concussion grenade fall in front of a companion and, quickly shifting his position, shielded the man from the impact of the blast.”

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