Army Aviation Hall of Fame 2001 Induction
Then CW2 Gerald D. Green became the hero of heroes during more than 1,600 combat missions in Vietnam. Among his 81 awards are the Distinguished Service Cross, three Silver Stars, four Distinguished Flying Crosses and four Purple Heart Medals. His extraordinary feel for the battlefield and rare understanding of the enemy gave him unmatched ability to locate, kill or capture the enemy, and acquire key information. His creed was attack, attack, attack. He repeatedly returned from missions with a prisoner, backpacks of enemy he had killed or other crucial information. He was shot down seven times - five in a Cobra and two in a scout.
On one occasion he located a 122 millimeter artillery battery, drove the enemy from their guns and kept them under fire while his gunner disabled the artillery pieces with thermite grenades.
On another mission he found and followed a wire line and discovered a major enemy headquarters in an area where no activity had previously been reported.
He later discovered a cave which he suspected held supplies. Using a thermite grenade, he blew up this large ammunition supply point, taking the side of a mountain with it.
Five times he landed in the face of an attacking enemy to rescue downed air crews. He lifted the wounded out strapped and clinging to his Cobra rocket pods.
In another instance, although seriously wounded, he pulled his unconscious gunner from his crashed Scout and dragged him along a jungle trail to a rescue helicopter while fighting off an enemy platoon. During this running fire fight he killed eight of the pursuing enemy with grenades and his rifle. Exhausted and again wounded by a "punji stake" that completely penetrated his left foot, he boosted his still unconscious gunner into the helicopter and then covered its departure with grenades and rifle fire.
He twice extended his Vietnam tour. His daring and skill made him an inspiration to his fellow pilots and the heart and soul of his unit. His exploits were legendary in the 101st Airborne Division. Wounds required his evacuation and eventually the loss of his right leg. While hospitalized he was commissioned 1LT and later retired.
He was killed when his gyrocopter exploded during flight.