Summary

Conflict Period:
Vietnam War 1
Branch:
Navy 1
Rank:
Lieutenant 1
Birth:
07 May 1946 2
Brooklyn, New York 1
Death:
22 Feb 1978 1
Feb 1978 2
Atlantic Ocean 1
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Personal Details

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Full Name:
Paul Thomas Smyth 1
Full Name:
Paul Smyth 2
Birth:
07 May 1946 2
Brooklyn, New York 1
Male 1
Death:
22 Feb 1978 1
Feb 1978 2
Atlantic Ocean 1
Cause: Aircraft accident 1
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Birth:
Mother: Marjorie O. Davis 1
Father: John H. Smyth 1
Marriage:
Sue Ann Culbert 1
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Vietnam War 1

Branch:
Navy 1
Rank:
Lieutenant 1
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Occupation:
Lieutenant, U.S. Navy 1
Education:
Institution: Bethany College 1
Place: Bethany, West Virginia 1
From: 1965 1
To: 1968 1
Education:
Institution: Bradley University 1
Place: Peoria, Illinois 1
From: 1964 1
To: 1965 1
Battle Honors:
Vietnam Ceasefire Campaign: 30 March 1972 - 28 January 1973 1
Naval Service:
Commissioned: 07 Feb 1969 1
Enlistment (USNR): 28 Oct 1967 1
Grade: O3 1
On Active Duty: 01 Oct 1968 1
Rank: Lieutenant 1
USS America: VA-35 "Black Panthers" 1
USS John F. Kennedy: VA-34 "Blue Blasters" 1
Personal Awards:
Air Medal (Individual/Mission): 28 Oct 1972 1
Air Medal (Strike/Flight): 14 July - 16 August 1972 1
Air Medal (Strike/Flight): 17 August 1972 - 15 February 1973 1
Distinguished Flying Cross: 21 Dec 1972 1
National Defense Service Medal: 1 January 1961 - 14 August 1974 1
Navy Commendation Medal w/ "V": 23 Jul 1972 1
Navy Commendation Medal w/ "V": 07 Sep 1972 1
Navy Commendation Medal w/ "V": 27 Nov 1972 1
RVN Campaign Medal: 25 Dec 1972 1
Vietnam Service Medal: 1 Battle Star 1
Social Security:
Last Payment: Virginia Beach, VA 2
Social Security Number: ***-**-0188 2
Unit Awards (VA-34):
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation: 1 December 1977 - 1 March 1979 1
Unit Awards (VA-35):
CNO Aviation Safety Award: 1972 1
COMNAVAIRLANT "E" Award: 1972 1
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation: 14 July 1972 - 20 February 1973 1
RVN Gallantry Cross w/ Palm: 14 July 1972 - 20 February 1973 1

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Stories

Distinguished Flying Cross Citation

Haiphong, Vietnam

Distinguished Flying Cross

 

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the

DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For heroism while participating in aerial flight as a pilot of jet aircraft attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66).  On the night of 21 December 1972, Lieutenant SMYTH was assigned an all-weather single aircraft strike against a heavily defended surface-to-air missile site as part of a coordinated six-plane attack against major targets in the Haiphong military complex.  With minimum planning time, he courageously executed a daring high-speed low-level attack through fierce anti-aircraft fire that tracked his aircraft the entire overland route.  As he approached his targeted surface-to-air missile site, it launched a missile against his low flying aircraft.  Superbly executing difficult maneuvers at perilously low altitudes, he forced the missile to miss although the ensuing detonation violently shook his aircraft.  Undeterred, he tenaciously pressed a devastating attack against the site, walking his bombs directly through the target.  Lieutenant SMYTH’s aggressiveness in the face of determined enemy opposition, exemplary courage, and devotion to duty reflected great credit upon himself, and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

For the President,
B.A. Clarey
Admiral
Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet

 

Individual/Mission Air Medal Citation

Thanh Hoa, Vietnam

Air Medal

 

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting
the Air Medal (Bronze Star in lieu of first Award) to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For heroic achievement in aerial flight as a pilot of jet aircraft attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66).  On 28 October 1972, Lieutenant SMYTH successfully executed a high speed, low level night reconnaissance/strike mission into the heavily defended Thanh Hoa area. Despite intense enemy opposition, he displayed superior skill in locating and destroying a truck near Bai Thuong.  He then executed a low-level system attack against an important storage area south of Thanh Hoa.  As he completed his attack, two extremely large secondary explosions immediately followed by two large sustained fires erupted at his primary target.  Lieutenant SMYTH’s superb airmanship, exemplary courage, and devotion to duty in the face of determined enemy opposition reflected great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

 

For the President,
J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy 

 

Strike/Flight Air Medal Citation 1

Vietnam

Air Medal

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting
the Air Medal (First Strike/Flight Award) to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For meritorious achievement in aerial flight as a pilot of jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66), engaged in combat operations against the enemy in Southeast Asia from 14 July to 16 August 1972.  In the successful completion of eight strikes and ten direct combat support missions against the enemy in an active combat area, Lieutenant SMYTH contributed materially to the success of the United States’ efforts in Southeast Asia.  His devotion to duty in the face enemy fire under hazardous flying conditions was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The Numeral “1” to represent One Strike/Flight Award is authorized.

For the President,

J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy

Strike/Flight Air Medal Citation 2

Vietnam

Air Medal

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting
the Air Medal (Second through Eighth Strike/Flight Award) to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For meritorious achievement in aerial flight as a pilot of jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66), engaged in combat operations against the enemy in Southeast Asia from 17 August 1972 to 15 February 1973.  In the successful completion of sixty-six strikes and twenty direct combat support missions against the enemy in an active combat area, Lieutenant SMYTH contributed materially to the success of the United States’ efforts in Southeast Asia.  His devotion to duty in the face enemy fire under hazardous flying conditions was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The Numeral “8” to represent Eight Strike/Flight Awards is authorized.

For the President,

J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy

Navy Commendation Medal Citation 1

Vietnam

Navy Commendation Medal

The Secretary of the Navy takes pleasure in presenting
the Navy Commendation Medal to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For heroic achievement as a pilot of jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66).  On 23 July 1972, Lieutenant SMYTH was a wingman in an attack division of a major air wing strike against a well-defended storage area in North Vietnam.  En route to the target, he displayed superior skill in maintaining flight integrity despite opposition by enemy anti-aircraft fire.  Undaunted by exploding anti-aircraft shells at his roll-in point, he pressed home the attack delivering a devastating string of bombs.  All his bombs detonated on target, completely obliterating the storage area.  Lieutenant SMYTH’s superb airmanship, courage, and devotion to duty reflected great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The Combat Distinguishing Device is authorized.

For the Secretary,
J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy

Navy Commendation Medal Citation 2

Vietnam

Navy Commendation Medal

The Secretary of the Navy takes pleasure in presenting
a Gold Star in lieu of a second Navy Commendation Medal to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For heroic achievement as a pilot of jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66).  On 7 September 1972, Lieutenant SMYTH was assigned a close air support mission in support of Republic of Vietnamese troops in South Vietnam.  Despite enemy opposition by anti-aircraft fire, he skillfully located an enemy 130mm artillery site and without hesitation, struck the target.  As a result of his bombing accuracy, one enemy 130mm artillery weapon was destroyed.  Lieutenant SMYTH’s superb airmanship, courage, and devotion to duty reflected great credit upon himself, and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The Combat Distinguishing Device is authorized.

For the Secretary,
J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy

Navy Commendation Medal Citation 3

Thanh Hoa, Vietnam

Navy Commendation Medal

 

 

The Secretary of the Navy takes pleasure in presenting
a second Gold Star in lieu of a third Navy Commendation Medal to

Lieutenant Paul T. SMYTH
United States Naval Reserve

for service as set forth in the following:

CITATION

          “For heroic achievement as a pilot of jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron THIRTY-FIVE embarked on USS AMERICA (CVA-66).  On 27 November 1972, Lieutenant SMYTH and his bombardier/navigator launched as part of a four aircraft A-6 all-weather night mission tasked to augment and expand a choke point along the primary supply arteries heading south from Thanh Hoa.  After careful planning, he perfectly executed the low-level night mission through marginal weather, mountainous terrain, and continuous antiaircraft fire.  Relying exclusively on his complex radar navigation/attack system, he delivered all of his ordnance on the assigned aim point.  The accuracy of his delivery was evidenced later that night when a 100-truck convoy was stopped at the choke point and successfully attacked by other strike aircraft.  Lieutenant SMYTH’s professional airmanship, courage, and devotion to duty reflected great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

The Combat Distinguishing Device is authorized.

For the Secretary,
J.L. Holloway III
Vice Admiral
United States Navy

 

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