Raleigh Vietnam vet honored for heroism
Posted October 15, 2011
Raleigh, N.C. — A Vietnam veteran from Raleigh was honored on Saturday for risking his life to save others following a helicopter crash more than 40 years ago.
Rep. Brad Miller awarded retired Capt. Lyle Parker with the Soldier's Medal at a ceremony at the North Carolina Museum of History.
Parker was a doctor with the Army's 154th Medical Detachment.
In 1968, while under mortar and rocket attack, Parker rescued four soldiers from the debris of a helicopter crash.
Parker said he never set out to be a hero.
“A hero is a guy at the wrong place at the wrong time with witnesses. I think, just about anybody who was sitting there would not have said no to this situation (and) would have responded as I did,” he said.
Parker narrowly escaped before the chopper's damaged engine exploded into a ball of fire.
The Soldier's Medal is the highest military honor for non-combat heroism.