John P. Bobo

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For the former Arkansas State University football coach, see John Bobo.
John Paul Bobo
Bobo JP USMC.jpg
John P. Bobo, Medal of Honor recipient
Born(1943-02-14)February 14, 1943
Niagara Falls, New York
DiedMarch 30, 1967(1967-03-30) (aged 24)
KIA in Vietnam
Gate of Heaven Cemetery,
Lewiston, New York
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchUnited States Marine Corps
Years of service1965-1967
RankUS-O1 insignia.svg Second Lieutenant
Unit3rd Battalion 9th Marines
Battles/warsVietnam War 
AwardsMedal of Honor
Purple Heart Medal (2)
Combat Action Ribbon
National Order of Vietnam
RVN Gallantry Cross Medal

John Paul Bobo (February 14, 1943 – March 30, 1967) was a United States Marine Corps second lieutenant who posthumously received the Medal of Honor for heroism during the Vietnam War on March 30, 1967.


John Paul Bobo was born on February 14, 1943 in Niagara Falls, New York. He attended Bishop Duffy High School where he is today distinguished as an honored alum. He graduated from Niagara University in Niagara Falls, New York, in 1965.

US Marine Corps[edit]

Bobo enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve on May 28, 1965 in Buffalo while attending Niagara University. He received a B.A. Degree in History in June 1965, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve on December 17, 1965. He completed the Officer Candidate Course, The Basic School, Marine Corps Schools, Quantico, Virginia, in May 1966.

South Vietnam[edit]

Bobo was ordered to the Republic of Vietnam (South Vietnam) in June 1966 and was assigned duty as the Second Platoon commander, Company I, 3rd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division. While serving in Company I, 9th Marines, during Operation Prairie III, he was mortally wounded when a large number of NVA soldiers attacked his rifle company's night ambush position (at Hill 70, west of Con Thien) in Quang Tri Province near the Demilitarized Zone in South Vietnam on March 30, 1967. Knowing his wounds would prevent him from making it to safety, Bobo ordered his men to retreat while he stayed behind alone to fight the North Vietnamese aggressors. His actions saved the lives of all of his men. For this, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

He was 24 years old.


He is buried in Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Lewiston, New York.

Military decorations and awards[edit]

2nd Lieutenant Bobo's military awards include:

A light blue ribbon with five white five pointed stars Award star (gold).png
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Medal of Honor Purple Heart Medal w/ one 5/16 inch gold star
Combat Action Ribbon Presidential Unit Citation w/ one bronze service star. 3rd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment cited for the periods 15 Aug 65 - 7 Jan 67 and 1 Mar-15 Sep 67.[1] National Defense Service Medal
Vietnam Service Medal w/ two bronze service stars for the Vietnam Counteroffensive (25 Dec 65 - 30 Jun 66) and Vietnam Counteroffensive Phase II (1 Jul 66 - 31 May 67) campaigns. National Order of Vietnam, Knight RVN Gallantry Cross Medal w/ palm
RVN Gallantry Cross Unit Citation Emblem with Palm and Frame (in the colors of the Gallantry Cross)[2] RVN Civil Actions Medal Unit Citation Emblem with Palm and Frame (in the colors of the Civil Actions Medal, First Class)[2] RVN Campaign Medal w/ 60- device

Personal namings and honors[edit]

Maritime prepositioning ship USNS 2nd Lt. John P. Bobo is anchored in Souda Bay, Greece in 2010.

Lt. Bobo namings and honors include:

  • Niagara University's baseball field is named, John P. Bobo Field.
  • The Marine Corps Security Forces Response facility at Naval Weapons Station Earle was dedicated to 2nd Lt. John Bobo.

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to


for service as set forth in the following CITATION:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as Weapons Platoon Commander, Company I, Third Battalion, Ninth Marines, Third Marine Division, in Quang Tri Province, Republic of Vietnam, on 30 March 1967. Company I was establishing night ambush sites when the command group was attacked by a reinforced North Vietnamese company supported by heavy automatic weapons and mortar fire. Lieutenant BOBO immediately organized a hasty defense and moved from position to position encouraging the outnumbered Marines despite the murderous enemy fire. Recovering a rocket launcher from among the friendly casualties, he organized a new launcher team and directed its fire into the enemy machine gun position. When an exploding enemy mortar round severed Lieutenant Bobo's right leg below the knee, he refused to be evacuated and insisted upon being placed in a firing position to cover the movement of the command group to a better location. With a web belt around his leg serving as tourniquet and with his leg jammed into the dirt to curtail the bleeding, he remained in this position and delivered devastating fire into the ranks of the enemy attempting to overrun the Marines. Lieutenant BOBO was mortally wounded while firing his weapon into the main point of the enemy attack but his valiant spirit inspired his men to heroic efforts, and his tenacious stand enabled the command group to gain a protective position where it repulsed the enemy onslaught. Lieutenant BOBO's superb leadership, dauntless courage, and bold initiative reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.[8]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ NAVMC 2922 dated April 7, 2017, page 92 (PDF). Department of the Navy, Headquarters United States Marine Corps. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  2. ^ a b SECNAVINST 1650.1H dated August 22, 2006, page 7-5 (PDF). Department of the Navy. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Maritime Prepositioning Ships - T-AK". The United States Navy — Fact File. USN. Retrieved 2007-05-31.
  4. ^ "USNS 2nd Lt John Pl Bobo (T-AK 3008) Container & Roll-on/Roll-off Ship". Military Sealift Command Ship Inventory. United States Navy. Retrieved 2007-05-31.
  5. ^ a b "US MSC Buying USNS 2nd Lt. John P. Bobo". Defense Industry Daily. January 18, 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-31.
  6. ^ Mishalov, Neil. "Bobo, John". Retrieved 2007-05-31.
  7. ^ "2Lt John Paul Bobo". The Vietnam Veterans Memorial. The Wall-USA. Retrieved 2007-05-31.
  8. ^ 2dLt John P. Bobo, Marines Awarded the Medal of Honor.


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Marine Corps.