Today’s Medal of Honor Moment for 5 November

There are 8 Medals awarded for actions on this day in our military history, only one of them posthumous.  They span from the Indian Campaigns to Vietnam.  I’ve had the honor to meet, and in fact work for, one of the Holders.

Indian Campaigns – What a difference 130 or so years makes in the usage of language.  Today this citation would read as a criminal charge, not an award.  Of course, there are those who would argue, from a PC perspective, that that is exactly what it is anyway.

COMFORT, JOHN W.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Staked Plains, Tex., 5 November 1874. Entered service at: ——. Birth: Philadelphia, Pa. Date of issue: 13 October 1875. Citation: Ran down and killed an Indian.

Philippine Insurrection, with a Sergeant of Infantillery and another Sergeant of Infantry, doing what it usually takes to get someone to leave someplace you want – close and destroy.

CONDON, CLARENCE M.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Battery G, 3d U.S. Artillery. Place and date: Near Calulut, Luzon, Philippine Islands, 5 November 1899. Entered service at: ——. Birth: South Brooksville, Maine. Date of issue: 11 March 1902. Citation: While in command of a detachment of 4 men, charged and routed 40 entrenched insurgents, inflicting on them heavy loss.

WEAVER, AMOS

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 36th Infantry, U.S. Volunteers. Place and date: Between Calubus and Malalong, Philippine Islands, 5 November 1899. Entered service at: San Francisco, Calif. Born: 13 June 1869, Niles Township, Delaware County, Ind. Date of issue: 15 March 1902. Citation: Alone and unaided, charged a body of 15 insurgents, dislodging them, killing 4 and wounding several.

WWI – as we push to the Armistice, the Germans are rapidly falling back, with the Allied armies pushing hard to maintain contact and keep up the pressure.  The loss of morale among the Germans is evidenced by the large number of prisoners taken.  Meanwhile, at sea, a sailor faces his own shining moment as he saves his vessel from a watery grave.

ALLWORTH, EDWARD C.

Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 60th Infantry, 5th Division. Place and date: At Clery-le-Petit, France, 5 November 1918. Entered service at: Corvallis, Oreg. Born: 6 July 1887, Crawford, Wash. G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919. Citation: While his company was crossing the Meuse River and canal at a bridgehead opposite Clery-le-Petit, the bridge over the canal was destroyed by shell fire and Capt. Allworth’s command became separated, part of it being on the east bank of the canal and the remainder on the west bank. Seeing his advance units making slow headway up the steep slope ahead, this officer mounted the canal bank and called for his men to follow. Plunging in he swam across the canal under fire from the enemy, followed by his men. Inspiring his men by his example of gallantry, he led them up the slope, joining his hard-pressed platoons in front. By his personal leadership he forced the enemy back for more than a kilometer, overcoming machinegun nests and capturing 100 prisoners, whose number exceeded that of the men in his command. The exceptional courage and leadership displayed by Capt. Allworth made possible the re-establishment of a bridgehead over the canal and the successful advance of other troops.

CANN, TEDFORD H.

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. 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, 5 November 1917. Cann found a leak in a flooded compartment and closed it at the peril of his life, thereby unquestionably saving the ship.

Korea, and a native american who stood his ground, and died hard during those dark days of 1950 in Korea.

*RED CLOUD, MITCHELL, JR.

Rank and organization: Corporal, U S. Army, Company E, 19th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Chonghyon, Korea, 5 November 1950. Entered service at: Merrilan Wis. Born: 2 July 1924, Hatfield, Wis. G.O. No.: 26, 25 April 1951. Citation: Cpl. Red Cloud, Company E, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy. From his position on the point of a ridge immediately in front of the company command post he was the first to detect the approach of the Chinese Communist forces and give the alarm as the enemy charged from a brush-covered area less than 100 feet from him. Springing up he delivered devastating pointblank automatic rifle fire into the advancing enemy. His accurate and intense fire checked this assault and gained time for the company to consolidate its defense. With utter fearlessness he maintained his firing position until severely wounded by enemy fire. Refusing assistance he pulled himself to his feet and wrapping his arm around a tree continued his deadly fire again, until he was fatally wounded. This heroic act stopped the enemy from overrunning his company’s position and gained time for reorganization and evacuation of the wounded. Cpl. Red Cloud’s dauntless courage and gallant self-sacrifice reflects the highest credit upon himself and upholds the esteemed traditions of the U.S. Army.

Vietnam.  Two awards in the same company for the same fight.  One a private, the other the company commander.  I worked for then-LTG Foley when he commanded Fifth Army at Fort Sam Houston during my terminal assignment prior to retiring.  Nothing about the man day to day would give you a hint of the tiger he was on 5 November 1966.

BAKER, JOHN F., JR.

Rank and organization: Sergeant (then Pfc.), U.S. Army, Company A, 2d Battalion, 27th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place and date: Republic of Vietnam, 5 November 1966. Entered service at: Moline, Ill. Born: 30 October 1945, Davenport, Iowa. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. En route to assist another unit that was engaged with the enemy, Company A came under intense enemy fire and the lead man was killed instantly. Sgt. Baker immediately moved to the head of the column and together with another soldier knocked out 2 enemy bunkers. When his comrade was mortally wounded, Sgt. Baker, spotting 4 Viet Cong snipers, killed all of them, evacuated the fallen soldier and returned to lead repeated assaults against the enemy positions, killing several more Viet Cong. Moving to attack 2 additional enemy bunkers, he and another soldier drew intense enemy fire and Sgt. Baker was blown from his feet by an enemy grenade. He quickly recovered and single-handedly destroyed 1 bunker before the other soldier was wounded. Seizing his fallen comrade’s machine gun, Sgt. Baker charged through the deadly fusillade to silence the other bunker. He evacuated his comrade, replenished his ammunition and returned to the forefront to brave the enemy fire and continue the fight. When the forward element was ordered to withdraw, he carried 1 wounded man to the rear. As he returned to evacuate another soldier, he was taken under fire by snipers, but raced beyond the friendly troops to attack and kill the snipers. After evacuating the wounded man, he returned to cover the deployment of the unit. His ammunition now exhausted, he dragged 2 more of his fallen comrades to the rear. Sgt. Baker’s selfless heroism, indomitable fighting spirit, and extraordinary gallantry were directly responsible for saving the lives of several of his comrades, and inflicting serious damage on the enemy. His acts were in keeping with the highest traditions of the U.S. Army and reflect great credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of his country.

FOLEY, ROBERT F.  I had the privilege of serving with then-LTG Foley, commanding general, 5th United States Army.

Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, Company A, 2d Battalion, 27th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Quan Dau Tieng, Republic of Vietnam, 5 November 1966. Entered service at: Newton, Mass. Born: 30 May 1941, Newton, Mass. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Capt. Foley’s company was ordered to extricate another company of the battalion. Moving through the dense jungle to aid the besieged unit, Company A encountered a strong enemy force occupying well concealed, defensive positions, and the company’s leading element quickly sustained several casualties. Capt. Foley immediately ran forward to the scene of the most intense action to direct the company’s efforts. Deploying 1 platoon on the flank, he led the other 2 platoons in an attack on the enemy in the face of intense fire. During this action both radio operators accompanying him were wounded. At grave risk to himself he defied the enemy’s murderous fire, and helped the wounded operators to a position where they could receive medical care. As he moved forward again 1 of his machine gun crews was wounded. Seizing the weapon, he charged forward firing the machine gun, shouting orders and rallying his men, thus maintaining the momentum of the attack. Under increasingly heavy enemy fire he ordered his assistant to take cover and, alone, Capt. Foley continued to advance firing the machine gun until the wounded had been evacuated and the attack in this area could be resumed. When movement on the other flank was halted by the enemy’s fanatical defense, Capt. Foley moved to personally direct this critical phase of the battle. Leading the renewed effort he was blown off his feet and wounded by an enemy grenade. Despite his painful wounds he refused medical aid and persevered in the forefront of the attack on the enemy redoubt. He led the assault on several enemy gun emplacements and, single-handedly, destroyed 3 such positions. His outstanding personal leadership under intense enemy fire during the fierce battle which lasted for several hours, inspired his men to heroic efforts and was instrumental in the ultimate success of the operation. Capt. Foley’s magnificent courage, selfless concern for his men and professional skill reflect the utmost credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.

.
*Asterisk indicates 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.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.