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Damato, Anthony P.

Damato, Anthony P.

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Corporal, USMC, (1922-1944)

Anthony Peter Damato was born on 28 March 1922 in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps from that same state and served during the Second World War. After training, he received orders to Derry, Northern Ireland. While in Ireland, he volunteered for duty in the North African landings and helped to seize the port of Arzeau, Algeria. For his meritorious conduct in that action, he was advanced in rank. In March 1943, he returned to the United States and in the Summer departed for duty in the Pacific.

On 19-20 February 1944, Damato served with an assault company from the Second Battalion, Twenty-Second Marines, Fifth Amphibious Corps and participated in battle against enemy forces on Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll, Marshall Islands. While in a foxhole with two other Marines during the night, an undetected enemy approached them and threw in a grenade. Realizing the imminent danger, Damato pulled the grenade to him and absorbed the blast, sacrificing himself while saving his comrades. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity" on this occasion, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. During his time in the U.S. Marine Corps, he was promoted to the rank of Corporal. Anthony P. Damato is buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Honolulu, Hawaii.

USS Damato (DD-781), 1946-1980, was named in honor of Corporal Anthony P. Damato.

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