As his company searched a group of huts, which they had surrounded to look for suspects, Specialist Fourth Class Michael R. Blanchfield was posted outside as a look out. He spotted a man at the tree line and ordered him to stop but the man kept running, he then toss a grenade toward them. Blanchfield was wounded, but started to pursuit him. The suspect then threw a second grenade toward the cluster of huts. Realizing what would happen to his company and the villagers he immediately tossed himself on the grenade, absorbing the most of the impact.
Blanchfield was 19 when he did this.
Corporal Thomas W. Bennett was a medic, soldier and conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, whose company was going to assist another company that was caught in an ambush and under heavy fire. Bennett ran out amidst the hail of bullets and the splashing of rockets to give medical attention to those that were pinned down and dying. He made several trips, bringing them to a somewhat safer location. The Corporal even went out to retrieve the bodies the fallen. On third day of his involvement he advanced to save some men that were a part of an assault on the fortified enemy location. After giving aid to the first he moved up toward the second but was caught by the bullets.
Bennett was 21 went he saved them.Their are things that occur that you don't have much time to respond to. In times like those you can see peoples inner character, thoughts and how they prioritize things. It doesn't have to be in those split seconds that a persons character is shown. In the case of Bennett he spent three days going back and forth, not knowing if and when he would get shot carrying men, both alive and dead, back to safety. It is that fear of the unknown, the not knowing of it all, but doing it anyway that more thoroughly tests a person's resolve.
For their bravery both of these men received a Medal of Honor.
Michael R. Blanchfield: http://www.cmohs.org/recipient-detail/3232/blanchfield-michael-r.php
Thomas W. Bennett: http://www.cmohs.org/recipient-detail/3231/bennett-thomas-w.php