That morning, the Marine special operations team was in a village compound when it suddenly found itself the target of heavy enemy gunfire. The attack left the team leader and another Marine critically wounded.
“Without hesitation, Gunnery Sergeant Jacklin seized control and orchestrated a counterattack,” his medal citation states.
With the team’s primary communications link inoperable, Jacklin worked to set up alternative communications with a nearby supporting unit. He called in direct and indirect fire and aircraft strikes on the enemy position, while working at the same time to coordinate an evacuation to get the wounded to safety.
Jacklin then led the team members out of their compound to set up a landing zone for a casualty evacuation aircraft, a task that required the team to cross open terrain under fire. When ongoing enemy fire forced the aircraft to wave off on its first attempt to land, Jacklin remained there, “raining M203 grenades on the enemy and directing the fires of his team” until the aircraft could safely land and evacuate the wounded.
Though the rest of the team would be relieved by another special operations unit that evening, Jacklin opted to stay behind and fight the enemy.
“Throughout a raging battle all the next day, he provided vital intelligence, tactical assistance and deadly accurate personal fires,” his citation reads. “Throughout 48 hours, he inspired all around him as he led a vicious fight to defeat a determined enemy force.”
Hat Tip: thisainthell, article from Marine Corps Times