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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
WASHINGTON DC 20374-5060

Navy Medal of Honor: Korean Conflict 1950-1953

These individuals earned the Navy Medal of Honor during the period specified. Their names are followed by their rank and rate, if known, the date of the action and the vessel or unit on which they served.

U.S. Navy Recipients (Select name for complete citation)

BENFORD, EDWARD C. (posthumous), Hospital Corpsman Third Class, U.S. Navy, attached to a company in the 1st Marine Division., Korea, 5 September 1952.
CHARETTE, WILLIAM R., Hospital Corpsman Third Class, U.S. Navy Medical Corpsman serving with a marine rifle company., Korea, 27 March 1953.
DEWERT, RICHARD DAVID (posthumous), Hospital Corpsman, U.S. Navy. Hospital Corpsman attached to Marine infantry company, 1st Marine Division., Korea, 5 April 1951.
HAMMOND, FRANCIS C. (posthumous), Hospital Corpsman, U.S. Navy, attached as a medical corpsman to 1st Marine Division., Korea, 26-27 March 1953.
HUDNER, THOMAS JEROME, JR., Lieutenant (j.g.) U.S. Navy, pilot in Fighter Squadron 32, attached to USS Leyte., Chosin Reservoir area of Korea, 4 December 1950.
KILMER, JOHN E. (posthumous), Hospital Corpsman, U.S. Navy, attached to duty as a medical corpsman with a Marine rifle company in the 1st Marine Division., Korea, 13 August 1952.
KOELSCH, JOHN KELVIN. (posthumous), Lieutenant (j.g.), U.S. Navy, Navy helicopter rescue unit., North Korea, 3 July 1951

U.S. Marine Corps Recipients

ABRELL, CHARLES G. (posthumous), Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, Company E, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Hangnyong, Korea, 10 June 1951.
BARBER, WILLIAM E., Captain U.S. Marine Corps, commanding officer, Company F, 2d Battalion 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Chosin Reservoir area, Korea, 28 November to 2 December 1950.
BAUGH, WILLIAM B. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company G, 3d Battalion, 1st Marine, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Along road from Koto-ri to Hagaru-ri, Korea, 29 November 1950.
CAFFERATA, HECTOR A., JR., Private, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company F, 2d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 28 November 1950.
CHAMPAGNE, DAVID B. (posthumous), Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, Company A 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Place and date. Korea, 28 May 1952.
CHRISTIANSON, STANLEY R. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company E, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Seoul, Korea, 29 September 1950.
COMMISKEY, HENRY A., SR., First Lieutenant (then 2d Lt.), U.S. Marine Corps, Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Yongdungp'o, Korea, 20 September 1950.
DAVENPORT, JACK A. (posthumous), Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, Company G, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vicinity of Songnae-Dong, Korea, 21 September 1951.
DAVIS, RAYMOND G., Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Marine Corps commanding officer, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vicinity Hagaru-ri, Korea, 1 through 4 December 1950.
DEWEY, DUANE E., Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company E, 2d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Panmunjon, Korea, 16 April 1952.
GARCIA, FERNANDO LUIS (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company I, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 5 September 1952.
GOMEZ, EDWARD (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Reserve, Company E, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, Hill 749, 14 September 1951.
GUILLEN, AMBROSIO (posthumous), Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company F, 2d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Songuch-on, Korea, 25 July 1953.
JOHNSON, JAMES E. (posthumous), Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company J, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Yudam-ni, Korea, 2 December 1950 (declared missing in action on 2 December 1950, and killed in action as of 2 November 1953).
KELLY, JOHN D. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company C, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 28 May 1952.
KELSO, JACK WILLIAM (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company I, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 2 October 1952.
KENNEMORE, ROBERT S., Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company E, 2d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division ( Rein )., North of Yudam-ni, Korea, 27 and 28 November 1950.
LITTLETON, HERBERT A. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company C, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Chungchon, Korea, 22 April 1951.
LOPEZ, BALDOMERO (posthumous), First Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company A, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., During Inchon invasion in Korea, 15 September 1950.
MATTHEWS, DANIEL P. (posthumous), Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company F, 2d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vegas Hill, Korea, 28 March 1953. Entered service at. Van Nuys, Calif.
MAUSERT, FREDERICK W., III (posthumous), Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company B, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.), Songnap-yong, Korea, 12 September 1951.
McLAUGHLlN, ALFORD L., Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps Company L, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.), Korea, 4 and 5 September 1952.
MITCHELL, FRANK N. (posthumous), First Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company A, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Hansan-ni, Korea, 26 November 1950.
MONEGAN, WALTER C., JR. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company F, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Sosa-ri, Korea, 17 and 20 September 1950.
MORELAND, WHITT L. (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company C, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Kwagch'i-Dong, Korea, 29 May 1951.
MURPHY, RAYMOND G., Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company A, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 3 February 1953.
MYERS, REGINALD R., Major, U.S. Marine Corps, 3d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division, (Rein.)., Near Hagaru-ri, Korea, 29 November 1950.
OBREGON, EUGENE ARNOLD (posthumous), Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company G, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Seoul, Korea, 26 September 1950.
O'BRIEN, GEORGE H., JR., Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company H, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 27 October, 1952.
PHILLIPS, LEE H. (posthumous), Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, Company E, 2d Battalion, 7 Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 4 November 1950.
POYNTER, JAMES I. (posthumous), Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company A, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Near Sudong, Korea, 4 November 1950.
RAMER, GEORGE H. (posthumous), Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company I, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 12 September 1951.
REEM, ROBERT DALE (posthumous), Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company H, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vicinity Chinhung-ni, Korea, 6 November 1950.
SHUCK, WILLIAM E., JR. (posthumous), Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company G, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 3 July 1952.
SIMANEK, ROBERT E ., Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company F, 2d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 17 August 1952.
SITTER, CARL L., Captain, U.S. Marine Corps, Company G, 3d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Hagaru-ri, Korea, 29 and 30 November 1950.
SKINNER, SHERROD E., JR. (posthumous), Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Battery F, 2d Battalion, 11th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 26 October 1952.
VAN WINKLE, ARCHIE, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company B, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vicinity of Sudong, Korea, 2 November 1950.
VITTORI, JOSEPH (posthumous), Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company F, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Hill 749, Korea, 15 and 16 September 1951.
WATKINS, LEWIS G. (posthumous), Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company I, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 7 October 1952.
WILSON, HAROLD E., Technical Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, Company G, 3d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Korea, 23-24 April 1951.
WINDRICH, WILLIAM G. (posthumous), Staff Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, Company I, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.)., Vicinity of Yudam-ni, Korea, 1 December 1950.


U.S. Navy recipients of the Medal of Honor, Korean Conflict

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Hospital Corpsman Third Class Edward C. Benford, United States Navy

For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving in operations against enemy aggressor forces. When his company was subjected to heavy artillery and mortar barrages, followed by a determined assault during the hours of darkness by an enemy force estimated at battalion strength, HC3c. Benford resolutely moved from position to position in the face of intense hostile fire, treating the wounded and lending words of encouragement. Leaving the protection of his sheltered position to treat the wounded when the platoon area in which he was working was attacked from both the front and rear, he moved forward to an exposed ridge line where he observed 2 marines in a large crater. As he approached the 2 men to determine their condition, an enemy soldier threw 2 grenades into the crater while 2 other enemy charged the position. Picking up a grenade in each hand, HC3c. Benford leaped out of the crater and hurled himself against the on-rushing hostile soldiers, pushing the grenades against their chests and killing both the attackers. Mortally wounded while carrying out this heroic act, HC3c. Benford, by his great personal valor and resolute spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of almost certain death, was directly responsible for saving the lives of his 2 comrades. His exceptional courage reflects the highest credit upon himself and enhances the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for others.

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Hospital Corpsman Third Class William R. Charette, United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action against enemy aggressor forces during the early morning hours. Participating in a fierce encounter with a cleverly concealed and well-entrenched enemy force occupying positions on a vital and bitterly contested outpost far in advance of the main line of resistance, HC3c. Charette repeatedly and unhesitatingly moved about through a murderous barrage of hostile small-arms and mortar fire to render assistance to his wounded comrades. When an enemy grenade landed within a few feet of a marine he was attending, he immediately threw himself upon the stricken man and absorbed the entire concussion of the deadly missile with his body. Although sustaining painful facial wounds, and undergoing shock from the intensity of the blast which ripped the helmet and medical aid kit from his person, HC3c. Charette resourcefully improvised emergency bandages by tearing off part of his clothing, and gallantly continued to administer medical aid to the wounded in his own unit and to those in adjacent platoon areas as well. Observing a seriously wounded comrade whose armored vest had been torn from his body by the blast from an exploding shell, he selflessly removed his own battle vest and placed it upon the helpless man although fully aware of the added jeopardy to himself. Moving to the side of another casualty who was suffering excruciating pain from a serious leg wound, HC3c. Charette stood upright in the trench line and exposed himself to a deadly hail of enemy fire in order to lend more effective aid to the victim and to alleviate his anguish while being removed to a position of safety. By his indomitable courage and inspiring efforts in behalf of his wounded comrades, HC3c. Charette was directly responsible for saving many lives. His great personal valor reflects the highest credit upon himself and enhances the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

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Hospital Corpsman Richard David Dewert, United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a HC, in action against enemy aggressor forces. When a fire team from the point platoon of his company was pinned down by a deadly barrage of hostile automatic weapons fired and suffered many casualties, HC Dewert rushed to the assistance of 1 of the more seriously wounded and, despite a painful leg wound sustained while dragging the stricken marine to safety, steadfastly refused medical treatment for himself and immediately dashed back through the fireswept area to carry a second wounded man out of the line of fire. Undaunted by the mounting hail of devastating enemy fire, he bravely moved forward a third time and received another serious wound in the shoulder after discovering that a wounded marine had already died. Still persistent in his refusal to submit to first aid, he resolutely answered the call of a fourth stricken comrade and, while rendering medical assistance, was himself mortally wounded by a burst of enemy fire. His courageous initiative, great personal valor, and heroic spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of overwhelming odds reflect the highest credit upon HC Dewert and enhance the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

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Hospital Corpsman Francis C. Hammond, United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a HC serving with the 1st Marine Division in action against enemy aggressor forces on the night of 26-27 March 1953. After reaching an intermediate objective during a counterattack against a heavily entrenched and numerically superior hostile force occupying ground on a bitterly contested outpost far in advance of the main line of resistance. HC Hammond's platoon was subjected to a murderous barrage of hostile mortar and artillery fire, followed by a vicious assault by onrushing enemy troops. Resolutely advancing through the veritable curtain of fire to aid his stricken comrades, HC Hammond moved among the stalwart garrison of marines and, although critically wounded himself, valiantly continued to administer aid to the other wounded throughout an exhausting 4-hour period. When the unit was ordered to withdraw, he skillfully directed the evacuation of casualties and remained in the fire-swept area to assist the corpsmen of the relieving unit until he was struck by a round of enemy mortar fire and fell, mortally wounded. By his exceptional fortitude, inspiring initiative and self-sacrificing efforts, HC Hammond undoubtedly saved the lives of many marines. His great personal valor in the face of overwhelming odds enhances and sustains the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

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Lieutenant (j.g.) Thomas Jerome Hudner, Jr., United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a pilot in Fighter Squadron 32, while attempting to rescue a squadron mate whose plane struck by antiaircraft fire and trailing smoke, was forced down behind enemy lines. Quickly maneuvering to circle the downed pilot and protect him from enemy troops infesting the area, Lt. (j.g.) Hudner risked his life to save the injured flier who was trapped alive in the burning wreckage. Fully aware of the extreme danger in landing on the rough mountainous terrain and the scant hope of escape or survival in subzero temperature, he put his plane down skillfully in a deliberate wheels-up landing in the presence of enemy troops. With his bare hands, he packed the fuselage with snow to keep the flames away from the pilot and struggled to pull him free. Unsuccessful in this, he returned to his crashed aircraft and radioed other airborne planes, requesting that a helicopter be dispatched with an ax and fire extinguisher. He then remained on the spot despite the continuing danger from enemy action and, with the assistance of the rescue pilot, renewed a desperate but unavailing battle against time, cold, and flames. Lt. (j.g.) Hudner's exceptionally valiant action and selfless devotion to a shipmate sustain and enhance the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

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Hospital Corpsman John E. Kilmer, United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action against enemy aggressor forces. With his company engaged in defending a vitally important hill position well forward of the main line of resistance during an assault by large concentrations of hostile troops, HC Kilmer repeatedly braved intense enemy mortar, artillery, and sniper fire to move from 1 position to another, administering aid to the wounded and expediting their evacuation. Painfully wounded himself when struck by mortar fragments while moving to the aid of a casualty, he persisted in his efforts and inched his way to the side of the stricken marine through a hail of enemy shells falling around him. Undaunted by the devastating hostile fire, he skillfully administered first aid to his comrade and, as another mounting barrage of enemy fire shattered the immediate area, unhesitatingly shielded the wounded man with his body. Mortally wounded by flying shrapnel while carrying out this heroic action, HC Kilmer, by his great personal valor and gallant spirit of self-sacrifice in saving the life of a comrade, served to inspire all who observed him. His unyielding devotion to duty in the face of heavy odds reflects the highest credit upon himself and enhances the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for another.

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Lieutenant (j.g.) John Kelvin Koelsch, United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with a Navy helicopter rescue unit. Although darkness was rapidly approaching when information was received that a marine aviator had been shot down and was trapped by the enemy in mountainous terrain deep in hostile territory, Lt. (j.g.) Koelsch voluntarily flew a helicopter to the reported position of the downed airman in an attempt to effect a rescue. With an almost solid overcast concealing everything below the mountain peaks, he descended in his unarmed and vulnerable aircraft without the accompanying fighter escort to an extremely low altitude beneath the cloud level and began a systematic search. Despite the increasingly intense enemy fire, which struck his helicopter on 1 occasion, he persisted in his mission until he succeeded in locating the downed pilot, who was suffering from serious burns on the arms and legs. While the victim was being hoisted into the aircraft, it was struck again by an accurate burst of hostile fire and crashed on the side of the mountain. Quickly extricating his crewmen and the aviator from the wreckage, Lt. (j.g.) Koelsch led them from the vicinity in an effort to escape from hostile troops, evading the enemy forces for 9 days and rendering such medical attention as possible to his severely burned companion until all were captured. Up to the time of his death while still a captive of the enemy, Lt. (j.g.) Koelsch steadfastly refused to aid his captors in any manner and served to inspire his fellow prisoners by his fortitude and consideration for others. His great personal valor and heroic spirit of self-sacrifice throughout sustain and enhance the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.


08 June 1999