Congressional Medal of Honor Society

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Second Nicaraguan Campaign - U.S. Marine Corps

Donald Leroy Truesdell

  • Also Known As: Name Changed to: Truesdale, Donald Leroy
  • Rank: Corporal (Highest Rank: Chief Warrent Officer 2)
  • Conflict/Era: Second Nicaraguan Campaign
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: April 14, 1932
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: vicinity of Constancia, near Coco River, northern Nicaragua, Nicaragua

Cpl. Truesdale was second in command of a Guardia Nacional Patrol in active operations against armed bandit forces in the vicinity of Constancia, near Coco River, northern Nicaragua, on 24 April 1932. While the patrol was in formation on the trail searching for a bandit group with which contact had just previously been made, a rifle grenade fell from its carrier and struck a rock, igniting the detonator. Several men close to the grenade at the time were in danger. Cpl. Truesdale, who was several yards away, could easily have sought cover and safety for himself. Knowing full well the grenade would explode within two or three seconds, he rushed for the grenade, grasped it in his right hand, and attempted to throw it away from the patrol. The grenade exploded in his hand, blowing it off and inflicting serious multiple wounds about his body. Cpl. Truesdale, in taking the full shock of the explosion himself, saved the members of the patrol from loss of life or serious injury.

Medal of Honor Recipient Donald L. Truesdell
Medal of Honor Recipient Donald L. Truesdell
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: South Carolina
  • Awarded Posthumously: No
  • Presentation Date & Details: July 19, 1932

    Nicaragua, presented by Brig. Gen. Randolph C. Berkeley

  • Born: August 8, 1906, Lugoff, Kershaw County, SC, United States
  • Died: September 21, 1993, Columbia, SC, United States
  • Buried: Truesdell Family Cemetery (MH) American Legion Headquarters (Cremains there), Washington, DC, United States

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