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CMOHS.org - Ensign DREXLER, HENRY CLAY, U.S. Navy

Recipient Detail

 

DREXLER, HENRY CLAY

Rank: Ensign
Organization: U.S. Navy
Company:
Division:
Born: 7 August 1901, Braddock, Pa.
Departed: Yes
Entered Service At:
G.O. Number:
Date of Issue: 02/03/1933
Accredited To: Pennsylvania
Place / Date:
 
 


DREXLER, HENRY CLAY Photo
 
Citation

For extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession on the occasion of a fire on board the U.S.S. Trenton. At 3:35 on the afternoon of 20 October 1924, while the Trenton was preparing to fire trial installation shots from the two 6-inch guns in the forward twin mount of that vessel, 2 charges of powder ignited. Twenty men were trapped in the twin mount. Four died almost immediately and 10 later from burns and inhalation of flame and gases. The 6 others were severely injured. Ens. Drexler, without thought of his own safety, on seeing that the charge of powder for the left gun was ignited, jumped for the right charge and endeavored to put it in the immersion tank. The left charge burst into flame and ignited the right charge before Ens. Drexler could accomplish his purpose. He met his death while making a supreme effort to save his shipmates.