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Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

George Benton Turner

Details
  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    Battery C, 499th Armored Field Artillery Battalion,
    14th Armored Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: January 3, 1945
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Philippsbourg, France
Citation
At Philippsbourg, France, he was cut off from his artillery unit by an enemy armored infantry attack. Coming upon a friendly infantry company withdrawing under the vicious onslaught, he noticed two German tanks and approximately 75 supporting foot soldiers advancing down the main street of the village. Seizing a rocket launcher, he advanced under intense small-arms and cannon fire to meet the tanks and, standing in the middle of the road, fired at them, destroying one and disabling the second. From a nearby half-track he then dismounted a machine gun, placed it in the open street and fired into the enemy infantrymen, killing or wounding a great number and breaking up the attack. In the American counterattack which followed, two supporting tanks were disabled by an enemy antitank gun. Firing a light machine gun from the hip, Pfc. Turner held off the enemy so that the crews of the disabled vehicles could extricate themselves. He ran through a hail of fire to one of the tanks which had burst into flames and attempted to rescue a man who had been unable to escape; but an explosion of the tank's ammunition frustrated his effort and wounded him painfully. Refusing to be evacuated, he remained with the infantry until the following day, driving off an enemy patrol with serious casualties, assisting in capturing a hostile strongpoint, and voluntarily and fearlessly driving a truck through heavy enemy fire to deliver wounded men to the rear aid station. The great courage displayed by Pfc. Turner and his magnificently heroic initiative contributed materially to the defense of the French town and inspired the troops about him.
Medal of Honor Recipient George B. Turner
Medal of Honor Recipient George B. Turner
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California
  • Awarded Posthumously: No
  • Presentation Date & Details: August 23, 1945
    The White House, presented by Pres. Harry S. Truman
  • Born: June 27, 1899, Longview, Gregg County, TX, United States
  • Died: June 29, 1963, Washington, DC, United States
  • Buried: Arlington National Cemetery (MH) (41-589), Arlington, VA, United States
 

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