Army Commendation Medal for lifesaving, (Capt James F. Spaulding)
Army Commendation Medal, crimp-over-slot brooch, machine-engraved “James F. Spaulding”; in a clear plastic case with ribbon bar and lapel pin.
On 18 September 1958, three civilian scientists from the Air Force Missile Tracking Facility at South Point, on the island of Hawaii, were caught in strong currents and swept out to sea. Weather closed in and reduced the ability of helicopters to effect a rescue, so two L-19 “Bird Dog” aircraft of the 25th Infantry Division were launched. Captain James F. Spaulding and 1Lt Daniel F. Dunn flew to the area, spotted the men in the water and dropped life rafts for them. Lt Dunn circled the swimmers while Capt Spaulding then landed and gave a fishing boat directions to the swimmers’ location. All three men were picked up from the sea without incident and returned to work the following day.