Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

Joseph E Muller

  • Rank: Sergeant
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    Company B, 305th Infantry,
    77th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: May 15 - 16, 1945
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Ishimmi, Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands
He displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. When his platoon was stopped by deadly fire from a strongly defended ridge, he directed men to points where they could cover his attack. Then through the vicious machine-gun and automatic fire, crawling forward alone, he suddenly jumped up, hurled his grenades, charged the enemy, and drove them into the open where his squad shot them down. Seeing enemy survivors about to man a machine gun, he fired his rifle at point-blank range, hurled himself upon them, and killed the remaining four. Before dawn the next day, the enemy counterattacked fiercely to retake the position. Sgt. Muller crawled forward through the flying bullets and explosives, then leaping to his feet, hurling grenades, and firing his rifle, he charged the Japs and routed them. As he moved into his foxhole shared with two other men, a lone enemy, who had been feigning death, threw a grenade. Quickly seeing the danger to his companions, Sgt. Muller threw himself over it and smothered the blast with his body. Heroically sacrificing his life to save his comrades, he upheld the highest traditions of the military service.
Medal of Honor Recipient Joseph E. Muller
Medal of Honor Recipient Joseph E. Muller
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: New York, New York
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Born: June 23, 1908, Holyoke, Hampden County, MA, United States
  • Died: May 16, 1945, near Ishimmi, Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands
  • Buried: National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) (MH) (M-1259), Honolulu, HI, United States

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