The Loss of a Legend

The Loss of a Legend

Medal of Honor recipient, U.S. Marine, and former deputy commandant for the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Col. Wesley L. Fox died Friday, Nov. 24, 2017, in Blacksburg, Virginia. He was 86.

Fox grew up in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley and enlisted with the U.S. Marines in 1950 at the start of the Korean War. Months later, he was deployed to Korea as a rifleman and began a 43-year career in the military. He spent the first 16 years as a noncommissioned officer, and in addition to his combat assignments, he worked as a drill instructor, a recruiter, and a military police officer. In 1966, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant.

On Feb. 22, 1969, while serving as the commanding officer of Company A, 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, 3rd Marine Division in A Shau Valley, Vietnam, Fox’s unit was attacked. Despite injury, Fox led his men as they advanced through heavy fire. They eventually forced the North Vietnamese troops to retreat. Wounded again in a final assault, Fox continued to refuse medical attention and instead ensured that other wounded Marines were tended to and evacuated.

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42 comments


  • Twoitsie, Ritch C

    I served under Wesley Fox’s command, Alpha 1/9, A-Co, 3rd Platoon during Operation Dewey Canyon, 1969 when he was considered for the MOH award for the battle on 22 February. We met once again sometime early 90’s when the MOH recipients were holding one of their events here in Phoenix AZ. Much more valuable now is the picture I have with him and I shacking hands that day while he wearing his MOH decoration. He also wrote and signed a brief personal statement in my book that reveals much on ‘Op Dewey Canyon’, which was published as ‘Don’t Tell America’, and as I understand is a now a collectors item. As always, I will remain proud to have served under a honorable, recognized Marine leader and hero. Semper Fi


  • debbie williams

    Rest in peace Marine! Prayers.


  • Lt Col David Stark. Basic School 1-56

    He went through hell and survived to a ripe old age


  • Monty (LEE) Sain, 1stSgt, USMC, Retired

    I knew the Colonel when he was making liaison visits and coordinating with his command. He visited the Marine Corps Representative Office at the U. S. Army Infantry School Ft Benning GA where I was the NCOIC. Semper Fi Sir. A truly remarkable Marine.


  • L/cpl D. Miller 1974-1976

    Rest in Peace, Sir. Your new duty station is no doubt a busy one. Semper Fi, Col.


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