James D. Askren II

The President of the United States takes great pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Flying Cross to Warrant Officer James D. Askren II for heroism while participating in aerial flight, evidenced by voluntary action above and beyond the call of duty in the Republic of Vietnam. Warrant Officer Askren distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 28 January 1966 while serving as Pilot during a medical evacuation mission near Bong Son. On this mission, already refused by a medical evacuation team because of poor weather conditions, Warrant Officer Askren volunteered to fly armed support to a volunteer evacuation team. A low ceiling and approaching darkness necessitated flying with navigation lights on and the occasional use of landing and searchlights to prevent collisions. The landing zone was small and only one evacuation helicopter could land at a time. While receiving intense ground fire, Warrant Officer Askren placed suppressive fire on the Viet Cong positions as he led the evacuation aircraft into the landing zone. Through his courage the evacuation mission was successful. Warrant Officer Askren’s outstanding flying ability and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.