SEATTLE, Nov. 5, 2009
--Medal of Honor recipient, former Northwest resident, retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Patrick Brady will be the keynote speaker at The Museum of Flight's annual Veterans Day Ceremony beginning Nov. 11 at 2 p.m. in the Side Gallery. The Museum of Flight President and CEO Dr. Bonnie J. Dunbar and City of Tukwila Mayor Jim Haggerton will deliver additional comments. An honor guard will be provided by the Overlake Squadron Civil Air Patrol. The ceremony will be complemented by a performance by the Boeing Employees' Concert Band at 1 p.m. On Veterans Day, all U.S. veterans and current U.S. military personnel will be admitted to the Museum free of charge.
Born in Philip, S.D., Gen. Brady attended Seattle's O'Dea High School and is a graduate of SeattleUniversity. During the Vietnam Conflict he served with the Medical Service Corps, flying UH-1H Huey air ambulance helicopters. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for piloting four extremely dangerous rescue flights in Vietnam on Jan. 6, 1968. Through his courageous airmanship 51 wounded men were safely evacuated.
The citation reads:
"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty, Maj. Brady distinguished himself while serving in the Republic of Vietnam commanding a UH-1H ambulance helicopter, volunteered to rescue wounded men from a site in enemy held territory which was reported to be heavily defended and to be blanketed by fog. To reach the site he descended through heavy fog and smoke and hovered slowly along a valley trail, turning his ship sideward to blow away the fog with the backwash from his rotor blades. Despite the unchallenged, close-range enemy fire, he found the dangerously small site, where he successfully landed and evacuated 2 badly wounded South Vietnamese soldiers. He was then called to another area completely covered by dense fog where American casualties lay only 50 meters from the enemy. Two aircraft had previously been shot down and others had made unsuccessful attempts to reach this site earlier in the day. With unmatched skill and extraordinary courage, Maj. Brady made 4 flights to this embattled landing zone and successfully rescued all the wounded. On his third mission of the day Maj. Brady once again landed at a site surrounded by the enemy. The friendly ground force, pinned down by enemy fire, had been unable to reach and secure the landing zone. Although his aircraft had been badly damaged and his controls partially shot away during his initial entry into this area, he returned minutes later and rescued the remaining injured. Shortly thereafter, obtaining a replacement aircraft, Maj. Brady was requested to land in an enemy minefield where a platoon of American soldiers was trapped. A mine detonated near his helicopter, wounding 2 crewmembers and damaging his ship. In spite of this, he managed to fly 6 severely injured patients to medical aid. Throughout that day Maj. Brady utilized 3 helicopters to evacuate a total of 51 seriously wounded men, many of whom would have perished without prompt medical treatment. Maj. Brady's bravery was in the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army."
Museum visitors can also learn about Medal of Honor recipients and American Fighter Aces at kiosks in the Museum's J. Elroy McCaw Personal Courage Wing (PCW). The McCaw PCW displays aircraft from World War I and World II while telling the stories of individual service and about the military experience during those conflicts.
Image: Maj. Gen. Patrick Brady. U.S. Army photo.