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Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Korean War - U.S. Marine Corps

Henry Alfred Commiskey Sr.

  • Rank: First Lieutenant (rank at time of action: Second Lieutenant)
  • Conflict/Era: Korean War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines,
    1st Marine Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: September 20, 1950
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Yongdungp'o, Korea
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a platoon leader in Company C, in action against enemy aggressor forces. Directed to attack hostile forces well dug in on Hill 85, 1st Lt. Commiskey spearheaded the assault, charging up the steep slopes on the run. Coolly disregarding the heavy enemy machine-gun and small-arms fire, he plunged on well forward of the rest of his platoon and was the first man to reach the crest of the objective. Armed only with a pistol, he jumped into a hostile machine-gun emplacement occupied by five enemy troops and quickly disposed of four of the soldiers with his automatic pistol. Grappling with the fifth, 1st Lt. Commiskey knocked him to the ground and held him until he could obtain a weapon from another member of his platoon and killed the last of the enemy gun crew. Continuing his bold assault, he moved to the next emplacement, killed two more of the enemy and then led his platoon toward the rear nose of the hill to rout the remainder of the hostile troops and destroy them as they fled from their positions. His valiant leadership and courageous fighting spirit served to inspire the men of his company to heroic endeavor in seizing the objective, and reflect the highest credit upon 1st Lt. Commiskey and the U.S. Naval Service.
Medal of Honor Recipient Henry A. Commiskey Sr.
Medal of Honor Recipient Henry A. Commiskey Sr.
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Hattiesburg, Forrest County, Mississippi
  • Awarded Posthumously: No
  • Presentation Date & Details: August 1, 1951
    The White House, presented by Pres. Harry S. Truman
  • Born: January 10, 1927, Hattiesburg, Forrest County, MS, United States
  • Died: August 16, 1971, Meridian, MS, United States
  • Buried: Cremated, ashes scattered over the Gulf of Mexico, at sea

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