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Peter Charles Lemon
Peter C Lemon.jpg
Peter C. Lemon, Army Medal of Honor recipient
Born June 5, 1950(1950-06-05) (age 68)
Place of birth Toronto, Ontario
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1968 - 79?
Rank Sergeant
Unit Company E, 2d Battalion, 8th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division
Battles/wars Vietnam War
Awards Medal of Honor
Bronze Star Medal (2)
Air Medal (2)
Army Commendation Medal
Purple Heart

Peter Charles Lemon (born June 5, 1950) is a former United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military's highest decoration, the Medal of Honor. He received the award for his actions on April 1, 1970 while serving in Tay Ninh province during the Vietnam War. Lemon is the only Canadian born U.S. citizen to be presented the medal for fighting in the Vietnam War. He is the fifth-youngest living Medal of Honor recipient.[1]


Peter Lemon was born in Toronto, Ontario. After his military service, he attended Colorado State University, graduating in 1979 with a degree in Speech and received his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Northern Colorado in 1981.[1] He currently works as a motivational speaker and is the author of the book Beyond the Medal, as well as being executive producer on the PBS special Beyond the Medal of Honor. Lemon has also run several corporations, including American Hospitality Association, Inc.; Darnell-Lemon, Inc.; and Probus, Inc.; as well as working as a semi-professional sculptor. On May 1, 2009, Mr. Lemon was presented the coveted Outstanding American by Choice award by President Barack Obama at The White House, recognizing his life of professional achievement and civic contribution. It is the first time in history the award was presented by the President of the United States. Lemon is an inductee in the elite Ranger Hall of Fame.

Lemon admitted in a 1971 newspaper interview that he was high on marijuana during the actions that earned him the Medal of Honor.[2]

Medal of Honor citationEdit

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company E, 2d Battalion, 8th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division. Place and date: Tay Ninh province, Republic of Vietnam, April 1, 1970. Entered service at: Tawas City, Mich. Born: June 5, 1950, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sgt. Lemon (then Sp4), Company E, distinguished himself while serving as an assistant machine gunner during the defense of Fire Support Base Illingworth. When the base came under heavy enemy attack, Sgt. Lemon engaged a numerically superior enemy with machine gun and rifle fire from his defensive position until both weapons malfunctioned. He then used hand grenades to fend off the intensified enemy attack launched in his direction. After eliminating all but 1 of the enemy soldiers in the immediate vicinity, he pursued and disposed of the remaining soldier in hand-to-hand combat. Despite fragment wounds from an exploding grenade, Sgt. Lemon regained his position, carried a more seriously wounded comrade to an aid station, and, as he returned, was wounded a second time by enemy fire. Disregarding his personal injuries, he moved to his position through a hail of small arms and grenade fire. Sgt. Lemon immediately realized that the defensive sector was in danger of being overrun by the enemy and unhesitatingly assaulted the enemy soldiers by throwing hand grenades and engaging in hand-to-hand combat. He was wounded yet a third time, but his determined efforts successfully drove the enemy from the position. Securing an operable machine gun, Sgt. Lemon stood atop an embankment fully exposed to enemy fire, and placed effective fire upon the enemy until he collapsed from his multiple wounds and exhaustion. After regaining consciousness at the aid station, he refused medical evacuation until his more seriously wounded comrades had been evacuated. Sgt. Lemon's gallantry and extraordinary heroism, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the U.S. Army.[3]

U.S. military awards and decorationsEdit

See alsoEdit


  • Kieth William Nolan. Into Cambodia. Presidio Press, 1999. Although not referenced in the main article, Nolan's book contains a good account of the action at FSB Illingham where Mr. Lemon earned his Medal of Honor.

External linksEdit

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