Group to Capt Malcolm D. Otis, 4th Cavalry, Vietnam

Product ID: A-9880
Country: United States
Condition: VF

Group to Captain Malcolm D. Otis, 4th Cavalry, 25th Infantry Division: Distinguished Service Cross, Robbins-contract black slot brooch, machine-engraved “Malcolm/D./Otis”; Bronze Star, one oak leaf cluster, slot brooch, unnamed; Air Medal, one oak leaf cluster, crimp brooch, unnamed; National Defense Service Medal; Vietnam Service Medal; Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal (US-made).

Captain (later Lt Colonel) Otis received the Distinguished Service Cross “for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Troop B, 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry, 25th Infantry Division. Captain Otis distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 31 January 1968 at Tan Son Nhut Air Base in Saigon. Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army forces launched a major offensive against the Saigon area with the mission of seizing control of critical allied military installations. One of the largest of the attacks was directed against the west end of Tan Son Nhut Air Base. The enemy succeeded in penetrating the defensive wire there and occupied the west end of the runway. Captain Otis quickly assembled his force and moved to the battle scene. Arriving at the gate of Tan Son Nhut, he immediately deployed his troop to the west into the face of the insurgent forces. Without losing the impetus of his maneuver, Captain Otis then wheeled to the south and attacked directly into the enemy flank. Even though greatly outnumbered by the enemy, the sped and ferocity of the assault forced the insurgents to take cover or flee. Throughout the seven and one-half hour battle for the hotly contested terrain, Captain Otis countered each enemy movement with a flanking force and heavy fire from his guns. Continuously exposing himself to the intense enemy fusilade, he moved from position to position on the battlefield, directing the attack and encouraging his men’s fight. When the enemy had been decisively beaten, he directed his forces in a detailed sweep of the area…”

Otis was a 1963 graduate of West Point. He served with the 1/14th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Germany. His first tour in Vietnam was in 1967-1968, after which he served as Professor of Military Science at Michigan State University. In 1972-1973, he returned to Vietnam to serve as an advisor with Military Assistance Command Vietnam.. After Vietnam, he served as a battalion executive officer and brigade S-3 with the 2nd Armored Brigade. In 1980-81, Otis commanded the 1/7th Armored. He retired in 1985