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Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

John D Magrath

  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    Company G, 85th Infantry,
    10th Mountain Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: April 14, 1945
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Castel d'Aiano, Italy
He displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty when his company was pinned down by heavy artillery, mortar, and small-arms fire, near Castel d'Aiano, Italy. Volunteering to act as scout, armed with only a rifle, he charged headlong into withering fire, killing two Germans and wounding three in order to capture a machine gun. Carrying this weapon across an open field through heavy fire, he neutralized two more machine-gun nests; he then circled behind four other Germans, killing them with a burst as they were firing on his company. Spotting another dangerous enemy position to his right, he knelt with the machine gun in his arms and exchanged fire with the Germans until he had killed two and wounded three. The enemy now poured increased mortar and artillery fire on the company's newly won position. Pfc. Magrath fearlessly volunteered again to brave the shelling in order to collect a report of casualties. Heroically carrying out this task, he made the supreme sacrifice a climax to the valor and courage that are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service.
Medal of Honor Recipient John D. Magrath
Medal of Honor Recipient John D. Magrath
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: East Norwalk, Fairfield County, Connecticut
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Born: July 4, 1924, East Norwalk, Fairfield County, CT, United States
  • Died: April 14, 1945, Italy
  • Buried: Riverside Cemetery (MH) (20-185) , Norwalk, CT, United States
  • Location of Medal: Fort Drum Post Gymnasium, Fort Drum, NY

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