Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Martin, Harry L.

Martin, Harry L.

Tags
Related Content
First Lieutenant, USMCR, (1911-1945)

Harry Linn Martin was born on 4 January 1911 in Bucyrus, Ohio. He attended Bucyrus High School and Michigan State College, East Lansing, Michigan. While at Michigan State, he was an avid athlete and served in the Reserve Officers' Training Corps. In 1936, Martin graduated from college and began employment with the Hawaiian Construction Tunnel Company of Honolulu, Hawaii.


Commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve in August 1943, after completing his training Martin became an Engineer Officer and was assigned to the Second Battalion (later the 5th Pioneer Battalion), Sixteenth Marines, Fifth Marine Division. In the June of 1944, his unit was transferred to Hawaii to prepare for Pacific Theater combat operations.


On 19 February 1945, as a platoon Leader with the Fifth Pioneer Battalion, Martin went ashore during the first day of the invasion of Iwo Jima. He was promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant on 1 March. At dawn on 26 March, as the main fighting on the island neared an end, several hundred Japanese attacked his unit's bivouac area. Martin organized resistance, rescued surrounded Marines and, until mortally wounded by a grenade, led a counterattack. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life, " he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. Harry L. Martin is buried at Oakwood Cemetery, Bucyrus, Ohio.


USNS 1st LT Harry L. Martin, (T-AK-3015), 2000-____, is named in honor of First Lieutenant Martin.


This page features the only image we have concerning Harry L. Martin.