2016 Wall of Gallantry - RADM Chester A. Richmond
Commander Chester Richmond received the Distinguished Flying Cross for extraordinary achievement on 12 and 13 April 1961, as pilot of HUL-1G CGNR 1338, single-engine Sioux helicopter, engaged in delivery of a doctor and emergency medical supplies to St. George Island, Alaska, and subsequent air evacuation of two critically burned people.
Commander Richmond had departed the Coast Guard Air Detachment, Kodiak, Alaska as Aircraft Commander of UF-2G CGNR 7228, an amphibious fixed wing known as the Albatross, to accomplish the mission; however, surrounding ice conditions prevented a water landing so he proceeded to St. Paul Island to await the arrival of HUL-1G CGNR 1338, which he had ordered for use as alternate means of rescue.
Disregarding his own safety in hazardous weather conditions, Commander Richmond immediately departed for St. George with a doctor and emergency supplies of board. The ensuing 43 mile over-water flight was accomplished in total darkness, and a landing executed at the village ball field illuminated only by headlights of two trucks.
The doctor and medical supplies were rushed to the aid of the critically burned individuals, and emergency treatment was administered throughout the night.
At daybreak, Commander Richmond successfully evacuated the doctor and patients to St. Paul Island, where they could be further transported to a hospital. Commander Richmond’s expert airmanship, dauntless valor, sound judgement, and devotion to duty reflect the highest credit upon himself and the United States Coast Guard.