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Marine Finally Receives Purple Heart
Posted on: 04/05/19


 Lt. Col. Robert Black, USMC (Ret.) receives his "Purple Heart" at the 117th Anniversary Dinner

Once a USMC Captain and now retired Lieutenant Colonel of New York Naval Militia Marines Robert Black, pictured here at the New York Council, Navy League of the United States 117th Anniversary Dinner at the New York Yacht Club, in New York City, finally received a “Purple Heart." He was hit by shrapnel on July 6, 1968, as final Hill 881S commander during shutdown of Khe Sanh in Viet Nam. His actions that day as commanding officer of Company B, 1st battalion, 1st Marines on hills 881S and 689 resulted in his receiving the Silver Star.

Not very badly hit, Black ordered his chief corpsman not to report the wounding, lest he be medevaced away from his Marines and lose his command. He had received the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Gold Star (equivalent to the Navy Cross) for his earlier actions in the Battle of Hué as S-2 intelligence officer and Bravo's skipper, where he had the toes of his boots shot off by AK-47 fire.  With only minor cuts that he treated himself, he said today, "That didn't hurt like the hot shrapnel in my butt!"

Blackie’s 2019 “Purple Heart” was in the form of a bottle of Purple Heart Wine — an inspired collaboration between the Mondavi Family and the Purple Heart Foundation. Robert Black currently serves as Parliamentarian of the New York Council. To date, Purple Heart Wines has donated over $70,000 to the Foundation to support our veterans.



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