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Today's Medal of Honor Moment for 26 July

The Medal waits until 1876 to show itself, during the Interim Awards, 1871-1898 period, with a sailor saving a drowning shipmate.  This is another of those circumstances where today they would be awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for heroism not involving combat.  I know for you regular readers that gets a little tiresome to read - but take one for the Googlers, who may read only one in the whole series.


COREY, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Landsman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1853, New York, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 215, 9 August 1876. Citation: On board the U.S.S. Plymouth, Navy Yard, New York, 26 July 1876. Showing heroic conduct, Corey endeavored to save the life of one of the crew of that ship who had fallen overboard from aloft.

GIDDING, CHARLES

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1853, Bangor, Maine. Accredited to: Maine. G.O. No.: 215, 9 August 1876. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Plymouth, Gidding showed heroic conduct in trying to save the life of one of the crew of that ship, who had fallen overboard from aloft at the Navy Yard, New York, 26 July 1876.

KERSEY, THOMAS

Rank and organization: Ordinary Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1847, St. Johns, Newfoundland. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 215, 9 August 1876. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Plymouth at the Navy Yard, New York, 26 July 1876, Kersey displayed bravery and presence of mind in rescuing from drowning one of the crew of that vessel.

We move on to the Philippine Insurrection.


BATSON, MATTHEW A.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Calamba, Luzon, Philippine Islands, 26 July 1899. Entered service at: Carbondale, Ill. Birth: Anna, Ill. Date of issue: 8 March 1902. Citation: Swam the San Juan River in the face of the enemy's fire and drove him from his entrenchments.

McGRATH, HUGH J.

Rank and organization: Captain, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Calamba, Luzon, Philippine Islands, 26 July 1899. Entered service at: Eau Claire, Wis. Birth: Fond du Lac, Wis. Date of issue: 29 April 1902. Citation: Swam the San Juan River in the face of the enemy's fire and drove him from his entrenchments.

World War II, back out in the Pacific Theater where the Army and Marines are still in the process of taking Guam back from the Japanese.


WILSON, LOUIS HUGH, JR.

Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Marine Corps, Commanding Rifle Company, 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division. Place and date: Fonte Hill, Guam, 25-26 July 1944. Entered service at: Mississippi. Born: 11 February 1920, Brandon, Miss. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of a rifle company attached to the 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces at Fonte Hill, Guam, 25-26 July 1944. Ordered to take that portion of the hill within his zone of action, Capt. Wilson initiated his attack in mid-afternoon, pushed up the rugged, open terrain against terrific machinegun and rifle fire for 300 yards and successfully captured the objective. Promptly assuming command of other disorganized units and motorized equipment in addition to his own company and 1 reinforcing platoon, he organized his night defenses in the face of continuous hostile fire and, although wounded 3 times during this 5-hour period, completed his disposition of men and guns before retiring to the company command post for medical attention. Shortly thereafter, when the enemy launched the first of a series of savage counterattacks lasting all night, he voluntarily rejoined his besieged units and repeatedly exposed himself to the merciless hail of shrapnel and bullets, dashing 50 yards into the open on 1 occasion to rescue a wounded marine Iying helpless beyond the frontlines. Fighting fiercely in hand-to-hand encounters, he led his men in furiously waged battle for approximately 10 hours, tenaciously holding his line and repelling the fanatically renewed counterthrusts until he succeeded in crushing the last efforts of the hard-pressed Japanese early the following morning. Then organizing a 17-man patrol, he immediately advanced upon a strategic slope essential to the security of his position and, boldly defying intense mortar, machinegun, and rifle fire which struck down 13 of his men, drove relentlessly forward with the remnants of his patrol to seize the vital ground. By his indomitable leadership, daring combat tactics, and valor in the face of overwhelming odds, Capt. Wilson succeeded in capturing and holding the strategic high ground in his regimental sector, thereby contributing essentially to the success of his regimental mission and to the annihilation of 350 Japanese troops. His inspiring conduct throughout the critical periods of this decisive action sustains and enhances the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.