PEOPLE--UNITED STATES

Private First Class John D. New, USMC, (1924-1944)

John Dury New was born on 12 August 1924 in Mobile, Alabama. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps from that state on 8 December 1941. After completion of recruit training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island, South Carolina, he briefly served at Quantico, Virginia before joining the Fourth Replacement Battalion, Fleet Marine Force, Training Center at San Diego, California. In October 1942, he departed for combat duty in the Pacific war zone. Assigned to the Second Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division, he participated at the Battle of Guadalcanal. New later took part in the Battle for Cape Gloucester, New Britain. In April 1944, he was promoted to Private First Class and was based on Pavuvu Island, Russell Islands and Guadalcanal Island.

In September 1944, Private First Class New participated in action against Japanese forces on Peleliu Island, Palau Group. On 25 September, when an enemy soldier hurled a grenade in the area where two Marines were directing mortar fire, he threw himself on the deadly missile and absorbed the full impact of the explosion, sacrificing his life to save his comrades. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity" on this occasion, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. John D. New is buried at Mobile National Cemetery, Mobile, Alabama.

USS New (DD-818), 1946-1976, was named in honor of Private First Class John D. New.

This page features the only image we have concerning John D. New.

Photo #: NH 106312

Private First Class John D. New, USMC


Halftone reproduction of a photograph, copied from the official publication "Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, The Navy", page 230.
John D. New was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity" while serving with the Second Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division in action against Japanese forces on Peleliu Island, Palau Group on 25 September 1944.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 50KB; 580 x 765 pixels

 


Medal of Honor citation of Private First Class John D. New, USMC (as printed in the official publication "Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, The Navy", page 230):

"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the Second Battalion, Seventh Marines, FIRST Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on Peleliu Island, Palau Group, 25 September 1944. When a sudden Japanese soldier emerged from a cave in a cliff directly below an observation post and suddenly hurled a grenade into the position from which two of our men were directing mortar fire against enemy emplacements, Private First Class New instantly perceived the dire peril to the other Marines and, with utter disregard for his own safety, unhesitatingly flung himself upon the grenade and absorbed the full impact of the explosion, thus saving the lives of the two observers. Private First Class New's great personal valor and selfless conduct in the face of almost certain death reflect the highest credit upon himself and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country."



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