Charles Calvin Rogers
Rank and Organization:
Lieutenant Colonel, U.S . Army, 1st Battalion, 5th Artillery, 1st
Place and Date: Fishhook, near Cambodian border, Republic of Vietnam, 1 November 1968.
Entered Service At: Institute, W Va.
Born: 6 September 1929, Claremont, W Va.
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and
intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty. Lt. Col. Rogers, Field Artillery, distinguished
himself in action while serving as commanding officer, 1st
Battalion, during the defense of a forward fire support base. In
the early morning hours, the fire support base was subjected to
a concentrated bombardment of heavy mortar, rocket and
rocket propelled grenade fire. Simultaneously the position was
struck by a human wave ground assault, led by sappers who
breached the defensive barriers with bangalore torpedoes and
penetrated the defensive perimeter. Lt. Col. Rogers with
complete disregard for his safety moved through the hail of
fragments from bursting enemy rounds to the embattled area.
He aggressively rallied the dazed artillery crewmen to man their
howitzers and he directed their fire on the assaulting enemy.
Although knocked to the ground and wounded by an exploding
round, Lt. Col. Rogers sprang to his feet and led a small
counterattack force against an enemy element that had
penetrated the howitzer positions. Although painfully wounded
a second time during the assault, Lt. Col. Rogers pressed the
attack killing several of the enemy and driving the remainder
from the positions. Refusing medical treatment, Lt. Col. Rogers
reestablished and reinforced the defensive positions. As a
second human wave attack was launched against another
sector of the perimeter, Lt. Col. Rogers directed artillery fire on
the assaulting enemy and led a second counterattack against the
charging forces. His valorous example rallied the beleaguered
defenders to repulse and defeat the enemy onslaught. Lt. Col.
Rogers moved from position to position through the heavy
enemy fire, giving encouragement and direction to his men. At
dawn the determined enemy launched a third assault against the
fire base in an attempt to overrun the position. Lt. Col. Rogers
moved to the threatened area and directed lethal fire on the
enemy forces. Seeing a howitzer inoperative due to casualties,
Lt. Col. Rogers joined the surviving members of the crew to
return the howitzer to action. While directing the position
defense, Lt. Col. Rogers was seriously wounded by fragments
from a heavy mortar round which exploded on the parapet of
the gun position. Although too severely wounded to physically
lead the defenders, Lt. Col. Rogers continued to give
encouragement and direction to his men in the defeating and
repelling of the enemy attack. Lt. Col. Rogers' dauntless
courage and heroism inspired the defenders of the fire support
base to the heights of valor to defeat a determined and
numerically superior enemy force. His relentless spirit of
aggressiveness in action are in the highest traditions of the
military service and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit,
and the U.S. Army.
Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Civilian Personnel Policy.
Black Americans in Defense of Our Nation.
Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1985.