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UNITED STATES NAVY - AWARDS of the MEDAL OF HONOR 1915-18
including US Marine Corps

Edited by Gordon Smith, Naval-History.Net

 
 

I am grateful to the U.S. Army Center of Military History for making the citations available on the Internet and appreciate the privilege of reading them.

Note: The US Army Medal (left) is different in design to that of the US Navy (right)

 

 

 

Awards in Chronological Order

             
 

1915

 

1916

 

1917

 
             
 

AT SEA
Lieutenant Commander Robert Cary USN
Fireman Telesforo Trinidad USN
Chief Gunner's Mate Frank Crilley USN
Chief Watertender Eugene Smith USN
 

HAITI CAMPAIGN
First Lieutenant Edward Ostermann USMC
Captain William Upshur USMC
Gunnery Sergeant Daniel Daly USMC
Major Smedley Butler USMC
Private Samuel Gross USMC
Sergeant Ross Lindsey Iams USMC

 

AT SEA
Gunner's Mate Wilhelm Smith USN

 

DOMINICAN CAMPAIGN

Corporal Joseph Glowin USMC
First Sergeant Roswell Winans USMC
 

AT SEA

Commander Claud Jones USN

Chief Machinist's Mate George Rud USN

Machinist Charles Willey USN
 

DOMINICAN CAMPAIGN

First Lieutenant Ernest Williams USMC

 

AT SEA

Commander Willis Bradley Jr USN

Seaman Ora Graves USN

Shipfitter Patrick McGunigal USN

Gunner's Mate Osmond Ingram USN

Seaman Tedford Cann USN

Chief Boatswain's Mate John Mackenzle USN

 

 

 
             

1918

             
 

AT SEA
Ship's Cook Jesse Covington USN

Quartermaster Frank Monroe Upton USN

 

FRENCH FRONT

Lieutenant Commander (Dental Corps) Alexander Gordon Lyle USN

 

AT SEA

Ensign Daniel Sullivan USNRF

 

CAPTURED AT SEA

Lieutenant Edouard Izac USN

 

FRENCH FRONT

Gunnery Sergeant Charles Hoffman USMC

Gunnery Sergeant Ernest Janson USMC

Lieutenant, JG,  Weedon Osborne USN

Lieutenant  Orlando Petty USNRF

Sergeant Louis Cukela USMC

Sergeant Matej Kocak USMC

Lieutenant Joel Boone USN

Pharmacist's Mate  John Balch USN

 

ADRIATIC SEA - IN THE AIR

Ensign Charles Hammann USNRF

 

FRENCH FRONT

Hospital Apprentice David Hayden USN
 

UNITED STATES - AIR CRASH

Chief Machinist's Mate Francis Ormsbee Jr, USN
 

AT SEA
Lieutenant Commander James Madison USNRF

 

 

FRENCH FRONT

Private John Kelly USMC
Corporal John Pruitt USMC

FRENCH FRONT – IN THE
AIR
Second Lieutenant Ralph Talbot USMC
Gunnery Sergeant Robert Robinson USMC


AT
SEA
Chief Gunner's Mate Oscar Schmidt Jr USN
Boatswain's Mate John Siegel USN

 

 

 

 

 
 

 1 9 1 5

AT SEA
 

 

USS San Diego - boiler room explosion


21 January 1915 - Lieutenant Commander ROBERT W. CARY USN. Entered service at: Buncston, Mo. Birth: Kansas City, Mo. Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession on the occasion of an explosion on board the U.S.S. San Diego (armoured cruiser - above), 21 January 1915. Lt. Comdr. Cary (then Ensign), U.S. Navy, an observer on duty in the firerooms of the U.S.S. San Diego, commenced to take the half-hourly readings of the steam pressure at every boiler. He had read the steam and air pressure on No. 2 boiler and was just stepping through the electric watertight door into No. 1 fireroom when the boilers in No. 2 fireroom exploded. Ens. Cary stopped and held open the doors which were being closed electrically from the bridge, and yelled to the men in No. 2 fireroom to escape through these doors, which 3 of them did. Ens. Cary's action undoubtedly saved the lives of these men. He held the doors probably a minute with the escaping steam from the ruptured boilers around him. His example of coolness did much to keep the men in No. 1 fireroom at their posts hauling fires, although 5 boilers in their immediate vicinity had exploded and boilers Nos. 1 and 3 apparently had no water in them and were likely to explode any instant. When these fires were hauled under Nos. 1 and 3 boilers, Ens. Cary directed the men in this fireroom into the bunker, for they well knew the danger of these 2 boilers exploding. During the entire time Ens. Cary was cool and collected and showed an abundance of nerve under the most trying circumstances. His action on this occasion was above and beyond the call of duty.

 


21 January 1915 - Fireman Second Class TELESFORO TRINIDAD USN. Born: 25 November 1890, New Washington Capig, Philippine Islands. Accredited to: Philippine Islands. G.O. No.: 142, 1 April 1915. Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession at the time of the boiler explosion on board the U.S.S. San Diego, 21 January 1915. Trinidad was driven out of fireroom No. 2 by the explosion, but at once returned and picked up R.E. Daly, fireman, second class, whom he saw to be injured, and proceeded to bring him out. While coming into No. 4 fireroom, Trinidad was just in time to catch the explosion in No. 3 fireroom, but without consideration for his own safety, passed Daly on and then assisted in rescuing another injured man from No. 3 fireroom. Trinidad was himself burned about the face by the blast from the explosion in No. 3 fireroom.

 


AT SEA

 


25 March 1915 - Chief Gunner's Mate FRANK WILLIAM CRILLEY USN, rescued diver off Honolulu. Born: 13 September 1883, Trenton, N.J. Accredited to: Pennsylvania. (19 November 1928). Citation: For display of extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession above and beyond the call of duty during the diving operations in connection with the sinking in a depth of water 304 feet, of the U.S.S. F.4 with all on board, as a result of loss of depth control, which occurred off Honolulu, T.H., on 25 March 1915. On 17 April 1915, William F. Loughman, chief gunner's mate, U.S. Navy, who had descended to the wreck and had examined one of the wire hawsers attached to it, upon starting his ascent, and when at a depth of 250 feet beneath the surface of the water, had his lifeline and air hose so badly fouled by this hawser that he was unable to free himself; he could neither ascend nor descend. On account of the length of time that Loughman had already been subjected to the great pressure due to the depth of water, and of the uncertainty of the additional time he would have to be subjected to this pressure before he could be brought to the surface, it was imperative that steps be taken at once to clear him. Instantly, realizing the desperate case of his comrade, Crilley (above left in 1928) volunteered to go to his aid, immediately donned a diving suit and descended. After a lapse of time of 2 hours and 11 minutes, Crilley was brought to the surface, having by a superb exhibition of skill, coolness, endurance and fortitude, untangled the snarl of lines and cleared his imperiled comrade, so that he was brought, still alive, to the surface.

 

 


9 September 1915 - Chief Watertender EUGENE P. SMITH USN, USS Decatur, rescue following explosion. Born: 8 August 1871, Truney, Ill. Accredited to: California. G.O. No.: 189, 8 February 1916. Citation: Attached to U.S.S. Decatur (destroyer - above); for several times entering compartments on board of Decatur immediately following an explosion on board that vessel, 9 September 1915, and locating and rescuing injured shipmates.

 


HAITI CAMPAIGN

 


24 October 1915 - First Lieutenant EDWARD ALBERT OSTERMANN USMC, 15th Company of Marines (mounted). Place and date: Vicinity Fort Liberte, Haiti, 24 October 1915. Entered service at: Ohio. Born: 1883, Columbus, Ohio. Citation: In company with members of the 15th Company of Marines, all mounted, 1st Lt. Ostermann left Fort Liberte, Haiti, for a 6-day reconnaissance. After dark on the evening of 24 October 1915, while crossing the river in a deep ravine, the detachment was suddenly fired upon from 3 sides by about 400 Cacos concealed in bushes about 100 yards from the fort. The marine detachment fought its way forward to a good position, which it maintained during the night, although subjected to a continuous fire from the Cacos. At daybreak, 1st Lt. Ostermann, in command of 1 of the 3 squads which advanced in 3 different directions, led his men forward, surprising and scattering the Cacos, and aiding in the capture of Fort Dipitie.

 


24 October 1915 - Captain WILLIAM PETERKIN UPSHUR USMC. Born: 28 October 1881, Richmond, Va. Appointed from: Virginia. Citation: In company with members of the 15th Company of Marines, all mounted, Capt. Upshur left Fort Liberte, Haiti, for a 6-day reconnaissance. After dark on the evening of 24 October 1915, while crossing the river in a deep ravine, the detachment was suddenly fired upon from 3 sides by about 400 Cacos concealed in bushes about 100 yards from the fort. The marine detachment fought its way forward to a good position which it maintained during the night, although subjected to a continuous fire from the Cacos. At daybreak, Capt. Upshur, in command of one of the 3 squads which advanced in 3 different directions led his men forward, surprising and scattering the Cacos, and aiding in the capture of Fort Dipitie.

 


24 October 1915 - Gunnery Sergeant DANIEL JOSEPH DALY USMC (Second Award). Born: Glen Cove, Long Island, N.Y., 11 November 1873. Accredited to: New York. Other Navy awards: Second Medal of Honor, Navy Cross. Citation: Serving with the 15th Company of Marines on 22 October 1915, G/Sgt. Daly was one of the company to leave Fort Liberte, Haiti, for a 6-day reconnaissance. After dark on the evening of 24 October, while crossing the river in a deep ravine, the detachment was suddenly fired upon from 3 sides by about 400 Cacos concealed in bushes about 100 yards from the fort. The marine detachment fought its way forward to a good position, which it maintained during the night, although subjected to a continuous fire from the Cacos. At daybreak the marines, in 3 squads, advanced in 3 different directions, surprising and scattering the Cacos in all directions. G/Sgt. Daly fought with exceptional gallantry against heavy odds throughout this action.

 


17 November 1915 - Major SMEDLEY DARLINGTON BUTLER USMC (Second Award). Born: 30 July 1881, West Chester, Pa. Appointed from: Pennsylvania. Other Navy awards: Second Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Medal. Citation: As Commanding Officer of detachments from the 5th, 13th, 23d Companies and the marine and sailor detachment from the U.S.S. Connecticut, Maj. Butler led the attack on Fort Riviere, Haiti, 17 November 1915. Following a concentrated drive, several different detachments of marines gradually closed in on the old French bastion fort in an effort to cut off all avenues of retreat for the Caco bandits. Reaching the fort on the southern side where there was a small opening in the wall, Maj. Butler gave the signal to attack and marines from the 15th Company poured through the breach, engaged the Cacos in hand-to-hand combat, took the bastion and crushed the Caco resistance. Throughout this perilous action, Maj. Butler was conspicuous for his bravery and forceful leadership.

 


17 November 1915 - Private SAMUEL GROSS USMC, 23d Company. (Real name is Samuel Marguiles) Born: 9 May 1891, Philadelphia, Pa. Accredited to: Pennsylvania. Citation: In company with members of the 5th, 13th, 23d Companies and the marine and sailor detachment from the U.S.S. Connecticut, Gross participated in the attack on Fort Riviere, Haiti, 17 November 1915. Following a concentrated drive, several different detachments of marines gradually closed in on the old French bastion fort in an effort to cut off all avenues of retreat for the Caco bandits. Approaching a breach in the wall which was the only entrance to the fort, Gross was the second man to pass through the breach in the face of constant fire from the Cacos and, thereafter, for a 10-minute period, engaged the enemy in desperate hand-to-hand combat until the bastion was captured and Caco resistance neutralized.


 

17 November 1915 - Sergeant ROSS LINDSEY IAMS USMC, 5th Company. Born: 5 May 1879, Graysville, Pa. Accredited to: Pennsylvania. Citation: In company with members of the 5th, 13th, 23d Companies and marine and sailor detachment from the U.S.S. Connecticut, Sgt. Iams participated in the attack on Fort Riviere, Haiti, 17 November 1915. Following a concentrated drive, several different detachments of marines gradually closed in on the old French bastion fort in an effort to cut off all avenues of retreat for the Caco bandits. Approaching a breach in the wall which was the only entrance to the fort, Sgt. Iams unhesitatingly jumped through the breach despite constant fire from the Cacos and engaged the enemy in a desperate hand-to-hand combat until the bastion was captured and Caco resistance neutralized.
 

 


1 9 1 6

 


AT SEA

 

 

24 January 1916 - Gunner's Mate First Class WILHELM SMITH USN, USS New York, rescue from gas-filled compartment. Born: 10 April 1870, Germany. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 202, 6 April 1916. Citation: On board the U.S.S. New York (dreadnought battleship - above), for entering a compartment filled with gases and rescuing a shipmate.
 

 

DOMINICAN CAMPAIGN

 


3 July 1916 -  Corporal JOSEPH ANTHONY GLOWIN USMC. Born: 14 March 1892, Detroit, Mich. Accredited to: Michigan. G.O. NO.: 244, 30 October 1916. Citation: During an engagement at Guayacanas on 3 July 1916, Cpl. Glowin participated in action against a considerable force of rebels on the line of march.
 

 

 

3 July 1916 - First Sergeant ROSWELL WINANS USMC. Later Brigadier General. Place and date: Guayacanas, Dominican Republic, 3 July 1916. Entered service at: Washington. Born. 9 December 1887, Brookville, Ind. G.O. No.: 244, 30 October 1916. Citation: During an engagement at Guavacanas on 3 July 1916, 1st Sgt. Winans participated in action against a considerable force of rebels on the line of march. During a running fight of 1,200 yards, our forces reached the enemy entrenchments and Cpl. Joseph A. Gowin, U.S.M.C., placed the machine gun, of which he had charge, behind a large log across the road and immediately opened fire on the trenches. He was struck once but continued firing his gun, but a moment later he was again struck and had to be dragged out of the position into cover. 1st Sgt. Winans, U.S.M.C., then arrived with a Colt's gun which he placed in a most exposed position, coolly opened fire on the trenches and when the gun jammed, stood up and repaired it under fire. All the time Glowin and Winans were handling their guns they were exposed to a very heavy fire which was striking into the logs and around the men, 7 men being wounded and 1 killed within 20 feet. 1st Sgt. Winans continued flring his gun until the enemy had abandoned the trenches.

 


AT SEA

 


 USS Memphis - destroyed in hurricane


29 August 1916 - Commander CLAUD ASHTON JONES USN. Born: 7 October 1885, Fire Creek, W.Va. Accredited to: West Virginia. (1 August 1932.) Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession as a senior engineer officer on board the U.S.S. Memphis (armoured cruiser - above), at a time when the vessel was suffering total destruction from a hurricane while anchored off Santo Domingo City, 29 August 1916. Lt. Jones (left - as Captain) did everything possible to get the engines and boilers ready, and if the elements that burst upon the vessel had delayed for a few minutes, the engines would have saved the vessel. With boilers and steampipes bursting about him in clouds of scalding steam, with thousands of tons of water coming down upon him and in almost complete darkness, Lt. Jones nobly remained at his post as long as the engines would turn over, exhibiting the most supreme unselfish heroism which inspired the officers and men who were with him. When the boilers exploded, Lt. Jones, accompanied by 2 of his shipmates, rushed into the firerooms and drove the men there out, dragging some, carrying others to the engineroom, where there was air to be breathed instead of steam. Lt. Jones' action on this occasion was above and beyond the call of duty.

 


29 August 1916 - Chief Machinist's Mate GEORGE WILLIAM RUD USN (posthumous). Born: 7 October 1883, Minneapolis, Minn. Accredited to: Minnesota. (1 August 1932.) Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession while attached to the U.S.S. Memphis, at a time when that vessel was suffered total destruction from a hurricane while anchored off Santo Domingo City, 29 August 1916. C.M.M. Rud took his station in the engineroom and remained at his post amidst scalding steam and the rushing of thousands of tons of water into his department, receiving serious burns from which he immediately died.

 


29 August 1916 - Machinist CHARLES H. WILLEY USN. Place and date: Off Santo Domingo City, Santo Domingo, 29 August 1916. Entered service at: Massachusetts. Born: 31 March 1889, East Boston, Mass. G.O. No.: 1 August 1932. Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession while serving on board the U.S.S. Memphis, at a time when that vessel was suffering total destruction from a hurricane while anchored off Santo Domingo City, 29 August 1916. Machinist Willey took his station in the engineer's department and remained at his post of duty amidst scalding steam and the rush of thousands of tons of water into his department as long as the engines would turn, leaving only when ordered to leave. When the boilers exploded, he assisted in getting the men out of the fireroom and carrying them into the engineroom, where there was air instead of steam to breathe. Machinist Willey's conduct on this occasion was above and beyond the call of duty.

 


DOMINICAN CAMPAIGN

 


29 November 1916 -  First Lieutenant ERNEST CALVIN WILLIAMS USMC. Born: 2 August 1887, Broadwell, Ill. Accredited to: Illinois. G.O. No.: 289, 27 April 1917. Other Navy award: Navy Cross. Citation: In action against hostile forces at San Francisco de Macoris, Dominican Republic, 29 November 1916. With only a dozen men available, 1st Lt. Williams rushed the gate of the fortress. With 8 of his party wounded by rifle fire of the defenders, he pressed on with the 4 remaining men, threw himself against the door just as it was being closed by the Dominicans and forced an entry. Despite a narrow escape from death at the hands of a rifleman, he and his men disposed of the guards and within a few minutes had gained control of the fort and the hundred prisoners confined there.
 

 

 

1 9 1 7

 


AT SEA

 

USS Pittsburg, ammunition explosion


23 July 1917 - Commander WILLIS WINTER BRADLEY Jr USN. Born: 28 June 1884, Ransomville, N.Y. Appointed from: North Dakota. Citation: For extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty while serving on the U.S.S. Pittsburgh (armoured cruiser - above), at the time of an accidental explosion of ammunition on that vessel. On 23 July 1917, some saluting cartridge cases were being reloaded in the after casemate: through an accident an explosion occurred. Comdr. Bradley (then Lieutenant), who was about to enter the casemate, was blown back by the explosion and rendered momentarily unconscious, but while still dazed, crawled into the casemate to extinguish burning materials in dangerous proximity to a considerable amount of powder, thus preventing further explosions.

 


23 July 1917 - Seaman ORA GRAVES USN. Born: 26 July 1896, Los Animas, Colo. Accredited to: Nebraska. G.O. No.: 366, 1918. Citation: For extraordinary heroism on 23 July 1917, while the U.S.S. Pittsburgh was proceeding to Buenos Aires, Argentina. A 3-inch saluting charge exploded, causing the death of C. T. Lyles, seaman. Upon the explosion, Graves (left) was blown to the deck, but soon recovered and discovered burning waste on the deck. He put out the burning waste while the casemate was filled with clouds of smoke, knowing that there was more powder there which might explode.

 


AT SEA

 


17 September 1917  - Shipfitter First Class PATRICK McGUNIGAL USN, USS Huntington, kite balloon rescue. Born: 30 May 1876, Hubbard, Ohio. Accredited to: Ohio. G.O. No.: 341, 1917. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the Huntington. On the morning of 17 September 1917, while the U.S.S. Huntington (armoured cruiser) was passing through the war zone, a kite balloon was sent up with Lt. (j.g.) H. W. Hoyt, U.S.  Navy, as observer. When the balloon was about 400 feet in the air, the temperature suddenly dropped, causing the balloon to descend about 200 feet, when it was struck by a squall. The balloon was hauled to the ship's side, but the basket trailed in the water and the pilot was submerged. McGunigal (above left), with great daring, climbed down the side of the ship, jumped to the ropes leading to the basket, and cleared the tangle enough to get the pilot out of them. He then helped the pilot to get clear, put a bowline around him, and enabled him to be hauled to the deck. A bowline was lowered to McGunigal and he was taken safely aboard.

 


15 October 1917 - Gunner's Mate First Class OSMOND K. INGRAM USN, USS Cassin, torpedoed (posthumous). Born: 4 August 1887, Alabama. Accredited to. Alabama. Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the presence of the enemy on the occasion of the torpedoing of the Cassin (destroyer), on 15 October 1917. While the Cassin was searching for the submarine, Ingram (left) sighted the torpedo coming, and realizing that it might strike the ship aft in the vicinity of the depth charges, ran aft with the intention of releasing the depth charges before the torpedo could reach the Cassin. The torpedo struck the ship before he could accomplish his purpose and Ingram was killed by the explosion. The depth charges exploded immediately afterward. His life was sacrificed in an attempt to save the ship and his shipmates, as the damage to the ship would have been much less if he had been able to release the depth charges.

 

 


5 November 1917 - Seaman TEDFORD H. CANN USN, USS May, flooding ship. Born: 3 September 1897, Bridgeport, Conn. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 366, 1918. Citation: For courageous conduct while serving on board the U.S.S. May (patrol yacht - above), 5 November 1917. Cann (left as Ensign) found a leak in a flooded compartment and closed it at the peril of his life, thereby unquestionably saving the ship.

 

 


17 December 1917 - Chief Boatswain's Mate JOHN MacKENZlE USN, USS Remlik, depth charge incident. Born: 7 July 1886, Bridgeport, Conn. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 391, 1918. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving on board the U.S.S. Remlik (patrol yacht), on the morning of 17 December 1917, when the Remlik encountered a heavy gale. During this gale, there was a heavy sea running. The depth charge box on the taffrail aft, containing a Sperry depth charge, was washed overboard, the depth charge itself falling inboard and remaining on deck. MacKenzie, on his own initiative, went aft and sat down on the depth charge, as it was impracticable to carry it to safety until the ship was headed up into the sea. In acting as he did, MacKenzie exposed his life and prevented a serious accident to the ship and probable loss of the ship and the entire crew.

 

 


1 9 1 8

 


AT SEA

USS Stewart, assisting survivors from sinking ship

 


17 April 1918 - Ship's Cook Third Class JESSE WHITFIELD COVINGTON USN. Entered service at: California. Born: 16 September 1889, Haywood, Tenn. G.O. No.: 403, 1918. Citation: For extraordinary heroism following internal explosion of the Florence H. The sea in the vicinity of wreckage was covered by a mass of boxes of smokeless powder, which were repeatedly exploding. Jesse W. Covington (left), of the U.S.S. Stewart (destroyer), plunged overboard to rescue a survivor who was surrounded by powder boxes and too exhausted to help himself, fully realizing that similar powder boxes in the vicinity were continually exploding and that he was thereby risking his life in saving the life of this man..

 


17 April 1918 - Quartermaster FRANK MONROE UPTON USN. Born: 29 April 1896, Loveland, Colo. Accredited to: Colorado. G.O. No.: 403, 1918. Citation: For extraordinary heroism following internal explosion of the Florence H, on 17 April 1918. The sea in the vicinity of wreckage was covered by a mass of boxes of smokeless powder, which were repeatedly exploding. Frank M. Upton, of the U.S.S. Stewart, plunged overboard to rescue a survivor who was surrounded by powder boxes and too exhausted to help himself. Fully realizing the danger from continual explosion of similar powder boxes in the vicinity, he risked his life to save the life of this man.
 

 

FRENCH FRONT


23 April 1918 - Lieutenant Commander (Dental Corps) ALEXANDER GORDON LYLE USN. Born: 12 November 1889, Gloucester, Mass. Appointed from: Massachusetts. Other  Navy award: Legion of Merit. Citation: For extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty while serving with the 5th Regiment, U.S. Marine Corps. Under heavy shellfire, on 23 April 1918, on the French Front, Lt. Comdr. Lyle rushed to the assistance of Cpl. Thomas Regan, who was seriously wounded, and administered such effective surgical aid while bombardment was still continuing, as to save the life of Cpl. Regan.



AT SEA

 


21 May 1918 - Ensign DANIEL AUGUSTUS JOSEPH SULLIVAN US Naval Reserve Force, USS Cristabel, depth charge incident. Born: 31 July 1884, Charleston, S.C. Appointed from: South Carolina. Citation: For extraordinary heroism as an officer of the U.S.S. Cristabel (patrol yacht - above) in conflict with an enemy submarine on 21 May 1918. As a result of the explosion of a depth bomb dropped near the submarine, the Christabel was so badly shaken that a number of depth charges which had been set for firing were thrown about the deck and there was imminent danger that they would explode. Ens. Sullivan (left as Lieutenant Commander) immediately fell on the depth charges and succeeded in securing them, thus saving the ship from disaster, which would inevitably have caused great loss of life.

 

CAPTURED AT SEA

 


31 May 1918 - Lieutenant EDOUARD VICTOR MICHEL IZAC USN. Place and date: Aboard German submarine U-90 as prisoner of war, 31 May 1918. Entered service at: Illinois. Born: 18 December 1891, Cresco, Howard County, Iowa. Citation: When the U.S.S. President Lincoln (transport - above) was attacked and sunk by the German submarine U-90, on 31 May 1918, Lt. Izac (left) was captured and held as a prisoner on board the U-90 until the return of the submarine to Germany, when he was confined in the prison camp. During his stay on the U-90 he obtained information of the movements of German submarines which was so important that he determined to escape, with a view to making this information available to the U.S. and Allied Naval authorities. In attempting to carry out this plan, he jumped through the window of a rapidly moving train at the imminent risk of death, not only from the nature of the act itself but from the fire of the armed German soldiers who were guarding him. Having been recaptured and reconfined, Lt. Izac made a second and successful attempt to escape, breaking his way through barbed-wire fences and deliberately drawing the fire of the armed guards in the hope of permitting others to escape during the confusion. He made his way through the mountains of southwestern Germany, having only raw vegetables for food, and at the end, swam the River Rhine during the night in the immediate vicinity of German sentries. (Note: date in original citation is 21 May 1918)

 


FRENCH FRONT


6 June 1918 - Gunnery Sergeant ERNEST AUGUST JANSON USMC, near Chateau-Thierry. Rank and organization:, U.S. Marine Corps, 49th Company. (Served under name of Charles F. Hoffman) Born: 17 August 1878, New York, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. (Also received Army Medal of Honor.) Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy near Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June 1918. Immediately after the company to which G/Sgt. Janson belonged, had reached its objective on Hill 142, several hostile counterattacks were launched against the line before the new position had been consolidated. G/Sgt. Janson was attempting to organize a position on the north slope of the hill when he saw 12 of the enemy, armed with 5 light machine guns, crawling toward his group. Giving the alarm, he rushed the hostile detachment, bayoneted the 2 leaders, and forced the others to flee, abandoning their guns. His quick action, initiative and courage drove the enemy from a position from which they could have swept the hill with machine gun fire and forced the withdrawal of our troops.

 


6 June 1918 - Lieutenant, Junior Grade, (Dental Corps) WEEDON E. OSBORNE USN, Belleau Wood (posthumous). Born: 13 November 1892, Chicago, Ill. Appointed from: Illinois. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in actual conflict with the enemy and under fire during the advance on Bouresche, France, on 6 June 1918. In the hottest of the fighting when the Marines made their famous advance on Bouresche at the southern edge of Belleau Wood, Lt (j.g.). Osborne threw himself zealously into the work of rescuing the wounded. Extremely courageous in the performance of this perilous task, he was killed while carrying a wounded officer to a place of safety.

 


11 June 1918 - Lieutenant (Medical Corps) ORLANDO HENDERSON PETTY US Naval Reserve Force, Belleau Wood. Born: 20 February 1874, Harrison, Ohio. Appointed from: Pennsylvania. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 5th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in France during the attack in the Boise de Belleau, 11 June 1918. While under heavy fire of high explosive and gas shells in the town of Lucy, where his dressing station was located, Lt. Petty attended to and evacuated the wounded under most trying conditions. Having been knocked to the ground by an exploding gas shell which tore his mask, Lt. Petty discarded the mask and courageously continued his work. His dressing station being hit and demolished, he personally helped carry Capt. Williams, wounded, through the shellfire to a place of safety.

 


18 July 1918 - Sergeant LOUIS CUKELA USMC, near Viller-Cottertes, 66th Company, 5th Regiment. Born: 1 May 1888, Sebenes, Austria. Accredited to: Minnesota. (Also received Army Medal of Honor.) Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 66th Company, 5th Regiment, during action in the Forest de Retz, near Viller-Cottertes, France, 18 July 1918. Sgt. Cukela (left - as Major) advanced alone against an enemy strong point that was holding up his line. Disregarding the warnings of his comrades, he crawled out from the flank in the face of heavy fire and worked his way to the rear of the enemy position. Rushing a machine gun emplacement, he killed or drove off the crew with his bayonet, bombed out the remaining part of the strong point with German hand grenades and captured 2 machine guns and 4 men.

 


18 July 1918 - Sergeant MATEJ KOCAK USMC (posthumous), near Viller-Cottertes. Born: 31 December 1882, Gbely (Slovakia), Austria. Accredited to: New York. ( Also received Army Medal of Honor. ) Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 66th Company, 5th Regiment, 2d Division, in action in the Viller-Cottertes section, south of Soissons, France, 18 July 1918. When a hidden machine gun nest halted the advance of his battalion, Sgt. Kocak went forward alone unprotected by covering fire and worked his way in between the German positions in the face of heavy enemy fire. Rushing the enemy position with his bayonet, he drove off the crew. Later the same day, Sgt. Kocak organized French colonial soldiers who had become separated from their company and led them in an attack on another machine gun nest which was also put out of action.

 


19 July 1918 - Lieutenant (Medical Corps) JOEL THOMPSON BOONE USN, Vierzy. Entered service at: St. Clair, Pa. Born: 2 August 1889, St. Clair, Pa. Citation: For extraordinary heroism, conspicuous gallantry, and intrepidity while serving with the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in actual conflict with the enemy. With absolute disregard for personal safety, ever conscious and mindful of the suffering fallen, Surg. Boone (left)
leaving the shelter of a ravine, went forward onto the open field where there was no protection and despite the extreme enemy fire of all calibers, through a heavy mist of gas, applied dressings and first aid to wounded Marines. This occurred southeast of Vierzy, near the cemetery, and on the road south from that town. When the dressings and supplies had been exhausted, he went through a heavy barrage of large-caliber shells, both high explosive and gas, to replenish these supplies, returning quickly with a sidecar load, and administered them in saving the lives of the wounded. A second trip, under the same conditions and for the same purpose, was made by Surg. Boone later that day.

 


19 July and 5 October 1918 - Pharmacist's Mate First Class JOHN HENRY BALCH USN Vierzy and Somme-Py.  Entered service at: Kansas City, Mo. Born: 2 January 1896, Edgerton, Kans. Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty, with the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in action at Vierzy, on 19 July 1918. Balch unhesitatingly and fearlessly exposed himself to terrific machine gun and high-explosive fire to succor the wounded as they fell in the attack, leaving his dressing station voluntarily and keeping up the work all day and late into the night unceasingly for 16 hours. Also in the action at Somme-Py on 5 October 1918, he exhibited exceptional bravery in establishing an advanced dressing station under heavy shellfire.

 

 

ADRIATIC SEA - IN THE AIR

 

 

21 August 1918 - Ensign CHARLES HAZELTINE HAMMANN, US Naval Reserve Force, aircraft pilot. Born: 16 March 1892, Baltimore, Md. Appointed from: Maryland. Citation: For extraordinary heroism as a pilot of a seaplane on 21 August 1918, when with 3 other planes Ens. Hammann (left) took part in a patrol and attacked a superior force of enemy land planes. In the course of the engagement which followed the plane of Ens. George M. Ludlow was shot down and fell in the water 5 miles off Pola. Ens. Hammann immediately dived down and landed on the water close alongside the disabled machine, where he took Ludlow on board. Although his machine was not designed for the double load to which it was subjected, and although there was danger of attack by Austrian planes, he made his way to Porto Corsini.

 

 

FRENCH FRONT

 


15 September 1918 - Hospital Apprentice First Class DAVID E. HAYDEN USN, Thiaucourt. Serving with the 2d Battalion, 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines. Entered service at: Texas. Born: 2 October 1897 Florence, Tex. Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. During the advance, when Cpl. Creed was mortally wounded while crossing an open field swept by machine gun fire, Hayden (left) unhesitatingly ran to his assistance and, finding him so severely wounded as to require immediate attention, disregarded his own personal safety to dress the wound under intense machine gun fire, and then carried the wounded man back to a place of safety.

 


UNITED STATES

 


25 September 1918 - Chief Machinist's Mate FRANCIS EDWARD ORMSBEE Jr, USN, Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Fla, attempted aircrash rescue. Born: 30 April 1892, Providence, R.l. Accredited to: Florida. G.O. No.: 436, 1918. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Fla., on 25 September 1918. While flying with Ens. J. A. Jova, Ormsbee saw a plane go into a tailspin and crash about three-quarters of a mile to the right. Having landed near by, Ormsbee lost no time in going overboard and made for the wreck, which was all under water except the 2 wing tips. He succeeded in partially extricating the gunner so that his head was out of water, and held him in this position until the speedboat arrived. Ormsbee then made a number of desperate attempts to rescue the pilot, diving into the midst of the tangled wreckage although cut about the hands, but was too late to save his life.

 

 

AT SEA

 


30 September 1918 - Lieutenant Commander JAMES JONAS MADISON US Naval Reserve Force, USS Ticonderoga sinking. Born: 20 May 1884, Jersey City, N.J. Appointed from: Mississippi. Citation: For exceptionally heroic service in a position of great responsibility as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Ticonderoga (transport - above), when, on 30 September 1918, that vessel was attacked by an enemy submarine and was sunk after a prolonged and gallant resistance. The submarine opened fire at a range of 500 yards, the first shots taking effect on the bridge and forecastle, 1 of the 2 forward guns of the Ticonderoga being disabled by the second shot. The fire was returned and the fight continued for nearly 2 hours. Lt. Comdr. Madison (left) was severely wounded early in the fight, but caused himself to be placed in a chair on the bridge and continued to direct the fire and to maneuver the ship. When the order was finally given to abandon the sinking ship, he became unconscious from loss of blood, but was lowered into a lifeboat and was saved, with 31 others, out of a total number of 236 on board. (Note: date in original citation is 4 October 1918)

 

 

FRENCH FRONT

Blanc Mont Ridge
 

 

3 October 1918 - Private JOHN JOSEPH KELLY USMC, 78th Company 6th Regiment. Born: 24 June 1898, Chicago, Ill. Accredited to: Illinois. (Also received Army Medal of Honor.) Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division, in action with the enemy at Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918. Pvt. Kelly ran through our own barrage a hundred yards in advance of the front line and attacked an enemy machine gun nest, killing the gunner with a grenade, shooting another member of the crew with his pistol, and returning through the barrage with 8 prisoners.

 


3 October 1918 - Corporal JOHN HENRY PRUITT USMC (posthumous). Born: 4 October 1896, Fayettesville, Ark. Accredited to: Arizona. (Also received Army Medal of Honor.) Citation: For extraordinary gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division, in action with the enemy at Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918. Cpl. Pruitt (left), single-handed attacked 2 machine guns, capturing them and killing 2 of the enemy. He then captured 40 prisoners in a dugout nearby. This gallant soldier was killed soon afterward by shellfire while he was sniping the enemy.

 


FRENCH FRONT - IN THE AIR

 


8 and 14 October 1918 - Second Lieutenant RALPH TALBOT USMC, aircraft pilot. Born: 6 January 1897, South Weymouth, Mass. Appointed from: Connecticut. Citation: For exceptionally meritorious service and extraordinary heroism while attached to Squadron C, 1st Marine Aviation Force, in France. 2d Lt. Talbot (left) participated in numerous air raids into enemy territory. On 8 October 1918, while on such a raid, he was attacked by 9 enemy scouts, and in the fight that followed shot down an enemy plane. Also, on 14 October 1918, while on a raid over Pittham, Belgium, 2d Lt. Talbot and another plane became detached from the formation on account of motor trouble and were attacked by 12 enemy scouts. During the severe fight that followed, his plane shot down 1 of the enemy scouts. His observer was shot through the elbow and his gun jammed. 2d Lt. Talbot maneuvered to gain time for his observer to clear the jam with one hand, and then returned to the fight. The observer fought until shot twice, once in the stomach and once in the hip and then collapsed, 2d Lt. Talbot attacked the nearest enemy scout with his front guns and shot him down. With his observer unconscious and his motor failing, he dived to escape the balance of the enemy and crossed the German trenches at an altitude of 50 feet, landing at the nearest hospital to leave his observer, and then returning to his aerodrome.

 


8 and 14 October 1918 - Gunnery Sergeant ROBERT GUY ROBINSON USMC, aircraft observer, 1st Marine Aviation Force Place and date: Pittham, Belgium, 14 October 1918. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Born: 30 April 1896, New York, N.Y. Citation: For extraordinary heroism as observer in the 1st Marine Aviation Force at the front in France. In company with planes from Squadron 218, Royal Air Force, conducting an air raid on 8 October 1918, G/Sgt. Robinson's plane was attacked by 9 enemy scouts. In the fight which followed, he shot down 1 of the enemy planes. In a later air raid over Pittham, Belgium, on 14 October 1918, his plane and 1 other became separated from their formation on account of motor trouble and were attacked by 12 enemy scouts. Acting with conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in the fight which ensued, G/Sgt. Robinson (above left), after shooting down 1 of the enemy planes, was struck by a bullet which carried away most of his elbow. At the same time his gun jammed. While his pilot maneuvered for position, he cleared the jam with one hand and returned to the fight. Although his left arm was useless, he fought off the enemy scouts until he collapsed after receiving 2 more bullet wounds, one in the stomach and one in the thigh.

 


AT SEA

 


9 October 1918 - Chief Gunner's Mate OSCAR SCHMIDT Jr USN, USS Chestnut Hill, explosion in submarine chaser. Entered service at: Pennsylvania. Born: 25 March 1896, Philadelphia, Pa. G.O. No.: 450, 1919. Citation: For gallant conduct and extraordinary heroism while attached to the U.S.S. Chestnut Hill (oiler - above, escorting submarine chasers), on the occasion of the explosion and subsequent fire on board the U.S. submarine chaser 219. Schmidt (left), seeing a man, whose legs were partly blown off, hanging on a line from the bow of the 219, jumped overboard, swam to the sub chaser and carried him from the bow to the stern where a member of the 219's crew helped him land the man on the afterdeck of the submarine. Schmidt then endeavored to pass through the flames amidships to get another man who was seriously burned. This he was unable to do, but when the injured man fell overboard and drifted to the stern of the chaser Schmidt helped him aboard.

 


1 November 1918 - Boatswain's Mate Second Class JOHN OTTO SIEGEL USN, USS Mohawk, rescue from ship on fire. Born: 21 April 1890, Milwaukee, Wis. Accredited to: New Jersey. Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving on board the Mohawk (US Coast Guard Cutter in Naval service) in performing a rescue mission aboard the schooner Hjeltenaes which was in flames on 1 November 1918. Going aboard the blazing vessel, Siegel rescued 2 men from the crew's quarters and went back the third time. Immediately after he had entered the crew's quarters, a steam pipe over the door burst, making it impossible for him to escape. Siegel was overcome with smoke and fell to the deck, being finally rescued by some of the crew of the Mohawk who carried him out and rendered first aid.

 
 

 
 

Photographs are courtesy of the US Naval Historical Center, to whom I am indebted. Click all photographs for enlargements

 

 

see also, all World War 1:

United States Navy
  US Navy and Coast Guard Casualties
Ranks of US Navy Commissioned Officers and Enlisted Men
On the Coast of France: U.S. Naval Forces in French Waters by Joseph Husband, Ensign, USNRF

 

and

 

 
 

return to Naval-History.Net

revised 26/8/11