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Michigan's Military and Space Heroes Museum

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Captain Ralph Powers

 

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to First Lieutenant (Medical Corps) Ralph E. Powers, United States Army, for extraordinary heroism while serving with 337th Ambulance Company, 310th Sanitary Train, 339th Infantry (Attached), 85th Division (Detachment in North Russia), in action, at Ust Padenga, Russia, January 20 - 23, 1919. While his dressing station was burning as a result of having been struck by a shell, Lieutenant Powers successfully evacuated all his patients numbering forty. He then moved to a new location and continued to work for two days under shell fire, until this dressing station too was struck and he himself mortally wounded, whereupon he gave orders that the other wounded should be removed first, and that he be left until the last.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Chief Master Sergeant Hackney's mini medals:

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Brigadier General Perry's dress blue uniform:

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Brigadier General Perry's tan uniform:

post-104949-0-09262500-1405397329.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Brigadier General Perry's medals:

post-104949-0-14411100-1405397399.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Lieutenant Kepford's uniform:

 

post-104949-0-49676900-1405397641.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Closeup of the ribbons:

 

post-104949-0-74719200-1405397716.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Chief Master Sergeant Hackney's full-size medals:

 

post-104949-0-57493500-1405397870.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Storekeeper Second Class Pagel's full-size medals:

 

post-104949-0-38932500-1405397934.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Major Drew's full-size medals:

 

post-104949-0-88952900-1405398014.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Ensign Oswald Gaynier's full-size medals:

 

post-104949-0-36927900-1405398154.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Chief Master Sergeant Hackney's shirt:

 

post-104949-0-03080300-1405398226.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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General of the Army and Air Force Henry "Hap" Arnold's flag:

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Here's a better photo:

 

post-104949-0-05138100-1405398524.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Medal of Honor Exhibits:

 

Private First Class William Thomas

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Private First Class William H. Thomas, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty on 22 April 1945, while serving with 149th Infantry Regiment, 38th Infantry Division, in action at Zambales Mountains, Luzon, Philippine Islands. Private First Class Thomas was a member of the leading squad of Company B, which was attacking along a narrow, wooded ridge. The enemy strongly entrenched in camouflaged emplacements on the hill beyond directed heavy fire and hurled explosive charges on the attacking riflemen. Private First Class Thomas, an automatic rifleman, was struck by one of these charges, which blew off both his legs below the knees. He refused medical aid and evacuation, and continued to fire at the enemy until his weapon was put out of action by an enemy bullet. Still refusing aid, he threw his last two grenades. He destroyed three of the enemy after suffering the wounds from which he died later that day. The effective fire of Private First Class Thomas prevented the repulse of his platoon and assured the capture of the hostile position. His magnificent courage and heroic devotion to duty provided a lasting inspiration for his comrades.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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First Lieutenant Charles Thomas

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to First Lieutenant (Infantry) Charles L. Thomas, United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in action on 14 December 1944, while serving with Company C, 614th Tank Destroyer Battalion, 103d Infantry Division, in action near Climbach, France. While riding in the lead vehicle of a task force organized to storm and capture the village of Climbach, France, then First Lieutenant Thomas' armored scout car was subjected to intense enemy artillery, self-propelled gun, and small arms fire. Although wounded by the initial burst of hostile fire, Lieutenant Thomas signaled the remainder of the column to halt and, despite the severity of his wounds, assisted the crew of the wrecked car in dismounting. Upon leaving the scant protection which the vehicle afforded, Lieutenant Thomas was again subjected to a hail of enemy fire which inflicted multiple gunshot wounds in his chest, legs, and left arm. Despite the intense pain caused by these wounds, Lieutenant Thomas ordered and directed the dispersion and emplacement of two antitank guns which in a few moments were promptly and effectively returning the enemy fire. Realizing that he could no longer remain in command of the platoon, he signaled to the platoon commander to join him. Lieutenant Thomas then thoroughly oriented him on enemy gun dispositions and the general situation. Only after he was certain that his junior officer was in full control of the situation did he permit himself to be evacuated. First Lieutenant Thomas' outstanding heroism were an inspiration to his men and exemplify the highest traditions of the Armed Forces.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Second Lieutenant Raymond Zussman

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Second Lieutenant Raymond Zussman, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty while serving with Company A, 756th Tank Battalion, 3d Infantry Division. On 12 September 1944, Second Lieutenant Zussman was in command of two tanks operating with an infantry company in the attack on enemy forces occupying the town of Noroy le Bourg, France. At 7 p.m., his command tank bogged down. Throughout the ensuing action, armed only with a carbine, he reconnoitered alone on foot far in advance of his remaining tank and the infantry. Returning only from time to time to designate targets, he directed the action of the tank and turned over to the infantry the numerous German soldiers he had caused to surrender. He located a road block and directed his tanks to destroy it. Fully exposed to fire from enemy positions only 50 yards distant, he stood by his tank directing its fire. Three Germans were killed and eight surrendered. Again he walked before his tank, leading it against an enemy-held group of houses, machinegun and small arms fire kicking up dust at his feet. The tank fire broke the resistance and 20 enemy surrendered. Going forward again alone he passed an enemy-occupied house from which Germans fired on him and threw grenades in his path. After a brief fire fight, he signaled his tank to come up and fire on the house. Eleven German soldiers were killed and 15 surrendered. Going on alone, he disappeared around a street corner. The fire of his carbine could be heard and in a few minutes he reappeared driving 30 prisoners before him. Under Second Lieutenant Zussman's heroic and inspiring leadership, 18 enemy soldiers were killed and 92 captured.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Ensign Francis Flaherty

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Ensign Francis Charles Flaherty, United States Naval Reserve, for conspicuous devotion to duty and extraordinary courage and complete disregard of his own life, above and beyond the call of duty, during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, by Japanese forces on 7 December 1941. When it was seen that the U.S.S. OKLAHOMA (BB-37) was going to capsize and the order was given to abandon ship, Ensign Flaherty remained in a turret, holding a flashlight so the remainder of the turret crew could see to escape, thereby sacrificing his own life.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Staff Sergeant Jesse Drowley

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant Jesse Ray Drowley, United States Army, for gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy at Bougainville, Solomon Islands, 30 January 1944, while serving with Company B, 1st Battalion, 132d Infantry Regiment, Americal Division. Staff Sergeant Drowley, a squad leader in a platoon whose mission during an attack was to remain under cover while holding the perimeter defense and acting as a reserve for assaulting echelon, saw three members of the assault company fall badly wounded. When intense hostile fire prevented aid from reaching the casualties, he fearlessly rushed forward to carry the wounded to cover. After rescuing two men, Staff Sergeant Drowley discovered an enemy pillbox undetected by assaulting tanks that was inflicting heavy casualties upon the attacking force and was a chief obstacle to the success of the advance. Delegating the rescue of the third man to an assistant, he ran across open terrain to one of the tanks. Signaling to the crew, he climbed to the turret, exchanged his weapon for a submachine gun and voluntarily rode the deck of the tank directing it toward the pillbox by tracer fire. The tank, under constant heavy enemy fire, continued to within 20 feet of the pillbox where Staff Sergeant Drowley received a severe bullet wound in the chest. Refusing to return for medical treatment, he remained on the tank and continued to direct its progress until the enemy box was definitely located by the crew. At this point he again was wounded by small arms fire, losing his left eye and falling to the ground. He remained alongside the tank until the pillbox had been completely demolished and another directly behind the first destroyed. Staff Sergeant Drowley, his voluntary mission successfully accomplished, returned alone for medical treatment.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Staff Sergeant Drowley uniform:

post-104949-0-42138900-1405645958.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Sergeant First Class Donald Moyer

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Sergeant First Class Donald Raymond Moyer (ASN: 16263096), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with Company E, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Seoul, Korea, on 20 May 1951. Sergeant First Class Moyer's platoon was committed to attack and secure commanding terrain stubbornly defended by a numerically superior hostile force emplaced in well-fortified positions. Advancing up the rocky hill, the leading elements came under intense automatic weapons, small-arms, and grenade fire, wounding the platoon leader and platoon sergeant. Sergeant First Class Moyer, realizing the success of the mission was imperiled, rushed to the head of the faltering column, assumed command and urged the men forward. Inspired by Sergeant First Class Moyer's unflinching courage, the troops responded magnificently, but as they reached the final approaches to the rugged crest of the hill, enemy fire increased in volume and intensity and the fanatical foe showered the platoon with grenades. Undaunted, the valiant group forged ahead, and as they neared the top of the hill, the enemy hurled a grenade into their midst. Sergeant First Class Moyer, fully aware of the odds against him, unhesitatingly threw himself on the grenade, absorbing the full blast of the explosion with his body. Although mortally wounded in this fearless display of valor, Sergeant First Class Moyer's intrepid act saved several of his comrades from death or serious injury, and his inspirational leadership and consummate devotion to duty contributed significantly to the subsequent seizure of the enemy stronghold and reflect lasting glory on himself and the noble traditions of the military service.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Sergeant First Class Donald Moyer's medals

 

post-104949-0-91977900-1405646161.jpg


Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Chief Warrant Officer Four Oscar Johnson, Jr.

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Sergeant [then Private First Class] Oscar Godfrey Johnson, Jr., United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty on September 16 - 18, 1944, while serving with Company B, 1st Battalion, 363d Infantry Regiment, 91st Infantry Division, in action at Scarperia, Italy. Sergeant Johnson practically single-handed protected the left flank of his company's position in the offensive to break the German's gothic line. Company B was the extreme left assault unit of the corps. The advance was stopped by heavy fire from Monticelli Ridge, and the company took cover behind an embankment. Sergeant Johnson, a mortar gunner, having expended his ammunition, assumed the duties of a rifleman. As leader of a squad of seven men he was ordered to establish a combat post 50 yards to the left of the company to cover its exposed flank. Repeated enemy counterattacks, supported by artillery, mortar, and machinegun fire from the high ground to his front, had by the afternoon of 16 September killed or wounded all his men. Collecting weapons and ammunition from his fallen comrades, in the face of hostile fire, he held his exposed position and inflicted heavy casualties upon the enemy, who several times came close enough to throw hand grenades. On the night of 16-17 September, the enemy launched his heaviest attack on Company B, putting his greatest pressure against the lone defender of the left flank. In spite of mortar fire which crashed about him and machinegun bullets which whipped the crest of his shallow trench, Sergeant Johnson stood erect and repulsed the attack with grenades and small arms fire. He remained awake and on the alert throughout the night, frustrating all attempts at infiltration. On 17 September, 25 German soldiers surrendered to him. Two men, sent to reinforce him that afternoon, were caught in a devastating mortar and artillery barrage. With no thought of his own safety, Sergeant Johnson rushed to the shell hole where they lay half buried and seriously wounded, covered their position by his fire, and assisted a Medical Corpsman in rendering aid. That night he secured their removal to the rear and remained on watch until his company was relieved. Five companies of a German paratroop regiment had been repeatedly committed to the attack on Company B without success. Twenty dead Germans were found in front of his position. By his heroic stand and utter disregard for personal safety, Sergeant Johnson was in a large measure responsible for defeating the enemy's attempts to turn the exposed left flank.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Major John Sjogren

 

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Staff Sergeant John Carleton Sjogren, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty on 23 May 1945, while serving with Company I, 160th Infantry Regiment, 40th Infantry Division, in action at San Jose Hacienda, Negros, Philippine Islands. Staff Sergeant Sjogren led an attack against a high precipitous ridge defended by a company of enemy riflemen, who were entrenched in spider holes and supported by well-sealed pillboxes housing automatic weapons with interlocking bands of fire. The terrain was such that only one squad could advance at one time; and from a knoll atop a ridge a pillbox covered the only approach with automatic fire. Against this enemy stronghold, Staff Sergeant Sjogren led the first squad to open the assault. Deploying his men, he moved forward and was hurling grenades when he saw that his next in command, at the opposite flank, was gravely wounded. Without hesitation he crossed 20 yards of exposed terrain in the face of enemy fire and exploding dynamite charges, moved the man to cover and administered first aid. He then worked his way forward and, advancing directly into the enemy fire, killed eight Japanese in spider holes guarding the approach to the pillbox. Crawling to within a few feet of the pillbox while his men concentrated their bullets on the fire port, he began dropping grenades through the narrow firing slit. The enemy immediately threw two or three of these unexploded grenades out, and fragments from one wounded him in the hand and back. However, by hurling grenades through the embrasure faster then the enemy could return them, he succeeded in destroying the occupants. Despite his wounds, he directed his squad to follow him in a systematic attack on the remaining positions, which he eliminated in like manner, taking tremendous risks, overcoming bitter resistance, and never hesitating in his relentless advance. To silence one of the pillboxes, he wrenched a light machinegun out through the embrasure as it was firing before blowing up the occupants with hand grenades. During this action, Staff Sergeant Sjogren, by his heroic bravery, aggressiveness, and skill as a soldier, single-handedly killed 43 enemy soldiers and destroyed nine pillboxes, thereby paving the way for his company's successful advance.

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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Major Sjogren Uniforms

 

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Will Twomey

In Honor of:

USA General John Wickham (1928-)

USAF Colonel Bernie Fisher MOH (1927-2014)

USMC Sergeant Al De Vito (Chosin Reservoir Survivor) (1926-)

USA Cpl. Macedonio Leyba (Bataan Death March survivor) (1917-2007)

 

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