Ken served in South Vietnam as a WO2 from 6 Dec 1966 to May 67 at Duc My Ranger Training Centre and from Jun 67 to Nov 67, 1/7 Cavalry Squadron, Tanks and 3/7 Cavalry near Hue. RTA 6 Dec 67.
While serving with AATTV, Ken was awarded the Military Medal. A copy of his citation reads as follows:
Army Number: 42924
Substantive Rank: Sergeant
Temporary Rank: Warrant Officer
Christian Name: Kenneth Alfred
Honour or Award: MM
Warrant Officer Richards enlisted in the Australian Regular Army on 29 October 1957, and after recruit training was posted to First Armoured Regiment, Royal Australian Armoured Corps. He volunteered for service in South Vietnam and was posted to the Australian Army Training Team on 6 December 1966, where he was allotted as an adviser to 3rd Troop 7th Cavalry Squadron, Army of the Republic of Vietnam.
On 7 September 1967 in Thua Thien Province, 3rd Troop was ordered to capture a heavily armed, well entrenched enemy position in a village consisting of two regular Viet Cong companies. Warrant Officer Class Two Richards occupied the Armoured Personnel Carrier spearheading the assault, which was supported by infantry. When the assault force was about 25 metres from the enemy they came under intense anti-tank, automatic small arms and 82mm mortar fire which halted the supporting infantry. Warrant Officer Class Two Richards on seeing this, stood on top of his Armoured Personnel Carrier, with total disregard for the intense enemy fire, and by shouting and waving attempted to rally the infantry to press home the assault. After a short delay the assault was pressed home by the Armoured Personnel Carriers. Because of the lack of supporting Infantry, Warrant Officer Class Two Richards dismounted some Armoured Personnel Carrier crewman and led them in an infantry type role through the village seeking out and neutralising small groups of Viet Cong until the village was securely held by Army of the Republic of Vietnam forces.
Warrant Officer Class Two Richards coolness under fire, personal bravery and leadership, directly contributed to the success of the mission. His courage and initiative were an inspiration to the Army of the Republic of Vietnam soldiers and reflects great credit on himself and the Australian Regular Army.
In addition to the unit citations awarded to AATTV and his award of the MM, Ken was also awarded the South Vietnamese Armed Forces Honour Medal 2nd Class.