A Soldier's Story: First Sergeant Sydney Gustave Gumpertz

A Soldier's Story: Captain Riley Leroy Pitts

Born on October 15, 1937, in Fallis, Oklahoma, Captain Riley Leroy Pitts attended Witicha State University and graduated with a degree in journalism.

He worked briefly with the Boeing Corporation before joining the U.S. Army.

Captain Riley Pitts was initially an information officer but transferred to a combat role and was assigned to the 27th Infantry Regiment, where he commanded C Company during the Vietnam War.

Captain Pitts earned a Congressional Medal of Honor on October 31, 1967, while assisting another company under fire. Leading an assault on enemy positions, he completely disregarded his own safety in his attack, once throwing himself on a rebounded grenade (it failed to explode) and maintaining continuous fire throughout until he succumbed to wounds.

Captain Riley Pitts is the first American officer of African descent to win the Congressional Medal of Honor.

He rests in Hillcrest Memorial Gardens, Spencer, Oklahoma.

Everyday Patriot Military Biographies 
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