Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Korean War - U.S. Army

Richard G Wilson

  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: Korean War
  • Unit/Command:
    Medical Company, Company I,
    187th Airborne Infantry Regiment
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: October 21, 1950
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Opari, Korea
Pfc. Wilson distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action. As medical aidman attached to Company I, he accompanied the unit during a reconnaissance-in-force through the hilly country near Opari. The main body of the company was passing through a narrow valley flanked on three sides by high hills when the enemy laid down a barrage of mortar, automatic-weapons, and small-arms fire. The company suffered a large number of casualties from the intense hostile fire while fighting its way out of the ambush. Pfc. Wilson proceeded at once to move among the wounded and administered aid to them oblivious of the danger to himself, constantly exposing himself to hostile fire. The company commander ordered a withdrawal as the enemy threatened to encircle and isolate the company. As his unit withdrew Pvt. Wilson assisted wounded men to safety and assured himself that none were left behind. After the company had pulled back he learned that a comrade previously thought dead had been seen to be moving and attempting to crawl to safety. Despite the protests of his comrades, unarmed and facing a merciless enemy, Pfc. Wilson returned to the dangerous position in search of his comrade. Two days later a patrol found him lying beside the man he returned to aid. He had been shot several times while trying to shield and administer to the wounded man. Pfc. Wilson's superb personal bravery, consummate courage, and willing self-sacrifice for his comrades reflect untold glory upon himself and uphold the esteemed traditions of the military service.
Medal of Honor Recipient Richard G. Wilson
Medal of Honor Recipient Richard G. Wilson
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Cape Girardeau, Cape Girardeau County, Missouri
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: June 21, 1951
    The Pentagon, presented by Gen. Omar N. Bradley to his Widow
  • Born: August 19, 1931, Marion, Williamson County, IL, United States
  • Died: October 21, 1950, Opari, Korea
  • Buried: Cape County Memorial Park (MH) (6-215), Cape Girardeau, MO, United States

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