Okemah Native to be inducted into Military HOF
An Okemah native will be among 11 veterans, some of whom will be inducted posthumously, into the Oklahoma Military Hall of Fame on Oct. 19, 2020.
The induction ceremony will be held at the Embassy Suites Conference Hotel, 2501 Conference Dr., Norman.
The inductee, Marine Sgt. Lyndol Raye Wilson, was born April 2, 1949, in Okemah. He graduated from high school in May 1967 and joined the Marine Corps, becoming a member of H Company, 5th Marines.
When the enemy launched the Tet Offensive in Vietnam in 1968, Wilson fought in the deadly month-long siege of Hue. He was awarded the Silver Star for his actions during this battle.
On February 3, 1968, as his unit was assaulting a well-entrenched and numerically superior North Vietnamese Army force near Hue University, the unit was halted temporarily by enemy fire, including B-40 rockets. Wilson ran across a fire-swept street, climbed to the roof of a building and began firing his 3.5-inch rocket launcher and light antitank assault weapon on enemy positions, enabling his unit to maneuver toward its objective, his Silver Star citation said.
The following day when his platoon was engaging the enemy, the squad leader was seriously wounded. Wilson immediately maneuvered to the man, picked him up and carried him to a covered position. Wilson then assumed command of the squad and led an assault, enabling Marines to seize their objective.
Wilson’s Silver Star citation said his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and selfless devotion to duty in the face of great personal danger was an inspiration to his unit.
Besides the Silver Star, Wilson’s decorations include the Purple Heart; Combat Action Ribbon; National Defense Service Medal; Vietnamese Service Medal; and Vietnamese Campaign Medal with Service Medal.
When Wilson returned from Vietnam, he served Okemah as a member of the Okemah Board of Education. He mentored Okemah youth by coaching Little League Football and performing other “give back” opportunities to assist the community.
Wilson died October 8, 2016.