Medal of Honor recipient Kenneth E. Stumpf dies at 77

America lost another true military legend this week, as it was announced that retired Army Sgt. Maj. Kenneth E. Stumpf, a Medal of Honor recipient, died at the age of 77, according to Army Times.

The Congressional Medal of Honor Society tells Stumpf’s unbelievably heroic story, which unfolded in late April, 1967, in the thick of nasty and intense fighting in Vietnam. His platoon came under heavy fire that day, and Stumpf’s actions explain exactly why he was awarded the nation’s highest military honors.

After witnessing three of his fellow soldiers become injured during the firefight, “Stumpf, serving at the time as a squad leader for 3rd Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 25th Infantry Division,” made three separate trips to rescue the downed men, all while the enemy continued to rain down a violent hail storm of bullets on their position.

However, that wasn’t the end of the story. After collecting his men at his own peril, on multiple occasions, Stumpf rallied his troops, and advanced on a number of enemy machine-gun bunkers, taking them all — and even taking one out by himself.

“I’ve always said I didn’t do anything above and beyond the call of duty. What I did was my duty. I had to do that… it was a responsibility that I had to my men,” Stumpf had previously said when asked about what he did on that day.

President Lyndon B. Johnson, in 1968, awarded Stumpf the high honor.

“He served three tours in Vietnam and retired as a sergeant major after 29 years of service,” the Army Times added. There are now only 65 living Medal of Honor recipients in the United States.