Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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H-001-3 Valor 

H-Gram 001 Attachment 3
Samuel J. Cox, Director NHHC
17 November 2016

Navy Valor at Pearl Harbor, 7 Dec 1941

Medal of Honor

Captain Mervyn Bennion – posthumous.  USS West Virginia, commanding officer.  Despite being mortally wounded, showed no concern but to continue fighting and save his ship. 

Chief John Finn.  Naval Station Kaneohe Bay.  Despite numerous painful wounds continued to man a .50 cal machine gun in the open continuously firing at Japanese aircraft despite intense strafing.

Ensign Francis Flaherty – posthumous.  USS Oklahoma.  Sacrificed his life to ensure remainder of his turret crew could escape.

Lieutenant Commander Samuel Fuqua.  USS Arizona.  As the senior surviving officer after the explosion that destroyed the Arizona, he remained on board directing damage control, firefighting and rescue efforts.

Chief Boatswain Edwin Hill – posthumous.  USS Nevada.  Swam back to the ship after casting off the lines.   Subsequently, after directing his men to take shelter, he was killed by bomb explosions and strafing in an exposed position on the forecastle attempting to let go the anchors as the Nevada was beached.

Ensign Herbert Jones – posthumous.  USS California.  Despite fatal wounds, organized and led a party supplying ammunition to the anti-aircraft batteries.

Rear Admiral Isaac Kidd – posthumous.  USS Arizona.  As Commander of Battleship Division One, he discharged his duties as Senior Officer Present Afloat (SOPA) until the Arizona blew up.

Gunner Jackson Pharris.  USS California.  Despite severe wounds, on his own initiative, set up a hand-supply for the anti-aircraft guns, and repeatedly risked his life to save other shipmates.

Radio Electrician (Warrant Officer) Thomas Reeves – posthumous.  USS California.  Passed ammunition by hand in a burning passageway to anti-aircraft guns after the mechanized hoists were put out-of-action, until overcome by smoke and fire.

Machinist Donald Ross.  USS Nevada.  Single-handedly kept the forward dynamo room operating, after ordering his men to leave due to smoke, steam and heat, despite being blinded.

Machinist Mate First Class Robert Scott – posthumous.  USS California.  Remained at his post at an air compressor as it flooded to ensure the anti-aircraft guns had air as long as possible.

Chief Watertender Peter Tomich – posthumous.  USS Utah.  Remained at his post in the engineering plant of USS Utah as she capsized, securing boilers and ensuring the escape of all fireroom personnel.

Captain Franklin Van Valkenburgh – posthumous.  USS Arizona.  As Commanding Officer, valiantly fought his ship until killed in the magazine explosion.

Seaman First Class James Ward – posthumous.  USS Oklahoma.  Sacrificed his life so others in his turret crew could escape.

Commander Cassin Young.  USS Vestal.  As commanding officer of the Vestal, was blown overboard by the force of the Arizona blast, but returned to his ship and despite two more bomb hits, got his sinking vessel underway and moved to where it would not be an obstruction.

Published: Fri Oct 20 14:33:49 EDT 2017