Today’s Medal of Honor Moment for 23 July

Medal of Honor recipient Tibor Rubin, courtesy the CMOHS. These legendary warriors walk among us, and most people have no idea what a warrior Grandpa was…
There are seven Medals awarded for actions on this day. The Medal took a break from the Civil War and didn’t stand to until the War with Spain.

HEARD, JOHN W.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, 3d U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Mouth of Manimani River, west of Bahia Honda, Cuba, 23 July 1898. Entered service at: Mississippi. Birth: Mississippi. Date of issue: 21 June 1899. Citation: After 2 men had been shot down by Spaniards while transmitting orders to the engine-room on the Wanderer, the ship having become disabled, this officer took the position held by them and personally transmitted the orders, remaining at his post until the ship was out of danger.

The Medal is awarded next during WWI, starting with more sailors getting the Medal for what would now be covered by the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for heroism not involving combat.

BRADLEY, WILLIS WINTER, JR.

Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy. 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, 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.

GRAVES, ORA

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. 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 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.

The next holders of the Medal earn theirs during WWII. Back to New Guinea.

*BOYCE, GEORGE W. G., JR.

Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 112th Cavalry Regimental Combat Team. Place and date. Near Afua, New Guinea, 23 July 1944. Entered service at: Town of Cornwall, Orange County, N.Y. Birth: New York City, N.Y. G.O. No.: 25, 7 April 1945. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty near Afua, New Guinea, on 23 July 1944. 2d Lt. Boyce’s troop, having been ordered to the relief of another unit surrounded by superior enemy forces, moved out, and upon gaining contact with the enemy, the two leading platoons deployed and built up a firing line. 2d Lt. Boyce was ordered to attack with his platoon and make the main effort on the right of the troop. He launched his attack but after a short advance encountered such intense rifle, machinegun, and mortar fire that the forward movement of his platoon was temporarily halted. A shallow depression offered a route of advance and he worked his squad up this avenue of approach in order to close with the enemy. He was promptly met by a volley of hand grenades, 1 falling between himself and the men immediately following. Realizing at once that the explosion would kill or wound several of his men, he promptly threw himself upon the grenade and smothered the blast with his own body. By thus deliberately sacrificing his life to save those of his men, this officer exemplified the highest traditions of the U.S. Armed Forces.

*EUBANKS, RAY E.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 503d Parachute Infantry. Place and date: At Noemfoor Island, Dutch New Guinea, 23 July 1944. Entered service at: LaGrange, N.C. Born: 6 February 1922, Snow Hill, N.C. G.O. No.: 20, 29 March 1945. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty at Noemfoor Island, Dutch New Guinea, 23 July 1944. While moving to the relief of a platoon isolated by the enemy, his company encountered a strong enemy position supported by machinegun, rifle, and mortar fire. Sgt. Eubanks was ordered to make an attack with 1 squad to neutralize the enemy by fire in order to assist the advance of his company. He maneuvered his squad to within 30 yards of the enemy where heavy fire checked his advance. Directing his men to maintain their fire, he and 2 scouts worked their way forward up a shallow depression to within 25 yards of the enemy. Directing the scouts to remain in place, Sgt. Eubanks armed himself with an automatic rifle and worked himself forward over terrain swept by intense fire to within 15 yards of the enemy position when he opened fire with telling effect. The enemy, having located his position, concentrated their fire with the result that he was wounded and a bullet rendered his rifle useless. In spite of his painful wounds he immediately charged the enemy and using his weapon as a club killed 4 of the enemy before he was himself again hit and killed. Sgt. Eubanks’ heroic action, courage, and example in leadership so inspired his men that their advance was successful. They killed 45 of the enemy and drove the remainder from the position, thus effecting the relief of our beleaguered troops

Korea. Legendary.

RUBIN, TIBOR RANK: Corporal Unit/Command: Company I, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division DATE: July 23, 1950 – April 20, 1953.
CITATION For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Corporal Rubin distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism during the period from July 23, 1950 to April 20, 1953 while serviing as a rifleman with Company I, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division in the Republic of Korea. While his unit was retreating to the Pusan Perimeter, Corporal Rubin was assigned to stay behind to keep open the vital Taegu-Pusan road link used by his withdrawing unit. During the ensuing battle, overwhelming numbers of North Korean troops assaulted a hill defended solely by Corporal Rubin. He inflicted a staggering number of casualties on the attacking force during his personal 24-hour battle, single-handedly slowing the enemy advance and allowing the 8th Cavalry Regiment to successfully complete its withdrawal. Following the breakout from the Pusan Perimeter, the 8th Cavalry Regiment proceeded northward and advanced into North Korea. During the advance, he helped capture several hundred North Korean soldiers. On October 30, 1950, Chinese forces attacked his unit at Unsan, North Korea, during a massive night-time assault. That night and throughout the next day, he manned a .30 caliber machine gun at the south end of the unit’s line after three previous gunners became casualties. He continued to man his machine gun until his ammunition was exhausted. His determined stand slowed the pace of the entmy advance in his sector permitting the remnants of his unit to retreat southward. As the battle raged, Corporal Rubin was severely wounded and captured by the Chinese. Choosing to remain in the prison camp despite offers from the Chinese to return him to his native Hungary, Corporal Rubin disregarded his own personal safety and immediately began sneaking out of the camp at night in search of food for his comrades. Breaking into enemy food storehouses and gardens, he risked certain torture or death if caught. Corporal Rubin provided not only food to the starving soldiers, but also desperately needed medical care and moral support for the sick and wounded of the POW camp. His brave, selfless efforts were directly attributed to saving the lives of as many as 40 of his fellow prisoners. Corporal Rubin’s gallant actions in close contact with the enemy and unyielding courage and bravery while a prison of war are in the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Army.

*Indicates a posthumous award.

Published by The Armorer

A grumpy old Cincinnatus who feeds goats, dogs, cats, ducks, peafowl, a horse, and sundry avians, especially in the winter. From time to time you will see guns. Until such time as the Progressives repeal the 2nd Amendment, everything you see is legal, Federal, State, Local, where I live. Your progressive paradise may have different rules. Don't project them onto me. Federalism still exists, even if it is but a shadow of what the Framers intended.

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