b. 20/06/1945 Franklin, New Hampshire. d. 21/09/1967 Con Thien, Vietnam.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 21/09/1967 Con Thien, Vietnam.
Jedh Barker was born on June 20, 1945, in Franklin, New Hampshire. At the age of six, he moved with his parents to Park Ridge, New Jersey, where he graduated from grammar school in 1960, and from Park Ridge High School in 1964, where he was captain of the football and baseball teams. He attended Fairleigh Dickinson University, East Rutherford, New Jersey, and then Northeast Missouri State Teachers College in Kirksville, Missouri until May 1966. While at Northeast, he was a member of the Bulldogs football team.
On June 20, 1966, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. He was a member of the Special Volunteer Reserve, 1st Marine Corps District, New York, New York, until discharged to enlist in the regular Marine Corps on October 5, 1966.
After completion of recruit training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina, in December 1966, he underwent individual combat training and weapons special training with the 2nd Infantry Training Battalion, 1st Infantry Training Regiment, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He was promoted to private first class, December 1, 1966, while undergoing individual combat training.
In March 1967, PFC Barker joined Marine Air Base Squadron 21, Marine Aircraft Group 12, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, San Francisco, California, and served as group guard until the following June when he was reassigned to Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines, 3rd Marine Division, in the Republic of Vietnam. He was promoted to Lance Corporal on September 1, 1967. On the morning of September 21, 1967, during Operation Kingfisher southeast of Con Thien near Phu Oc, the Battalion was ambushed by the 90th regiment of the 324B Division. Lance Corporal Barker was killed in action during this engagement.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a machine gunner with Company F, Second Battalion, Fourth Marines, Third Marine Division, in the Republic of Vietnam on 21 September 1967. During a reconnaissance operation near Con Thien, Corporal Barker's squad was suddenly hit by enemy sniper fire. The squad immediately deployed to a combat formation and advanced to a strongly fortified enemy position, when it was again struck by small arms and automatic weapons fire, sustaining numerous casualties. Although wounded by the initial burst of fire, Corporal Barker boldly remained in the open, delivering a devastating volume of accurate fire on the numerically superior force. The enemy was intent upon annihilating the small Marine force and, realizing that Corporal Barker was a threat to their position, directed the preponderance of their fire on his position. He was again wounded, this time in the right hand, which prevented him from operating his vitally needed machine gun. Suddenly, and without warning, an enemy grenade landed in the midst of the few surviving Marines. Unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his own personal safety, Corporal Barker threw himself upon the deadly grenade, absorbing with his own body the full and tremendous force of the explosion. In a final act of bravery, he crawled to the side of a wounded comrade and administered first aid before succumbing to his grievous wounds.
BURIAL LOCATION: GEORGE WASHINGTON MEMORIAL PARK, PARAMUS, NEW JERSEY.
Block M, Lot 63, Section A, Grave 2