Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

Rodger Wilton Young

  • Rank: Private
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    148th Infantry,
    37th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: July 31, 1943
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: New Georgia
On 31 July 1943, the infantry company of which Pvt. Young was a member, was ordered to make a limited withdrawal from the battle line in order to adjust the battalion's position for the night. At this time, Pvt. Young's platoon was engaged with the enemy in a dense jungle where observation was very limited. The platoon suddenly was pinned down by intense fire from a Japanese machine gun concealed on higher ground only 75 yards away. The initial burst wounded Pvt. Young. As the platoon started to obey the order to withdraw, Pvt. Young called out that he could see the enemy emplacement, whereupon he started creeping toward it. Another burst from the machine gun wounded him the second time. Despite the wounds, he continued his heroic advance, attracting enemy fire and answering with rifle fire. When he was close enough to his objective, he began throwing hand grenades, and while doing so was hit again and killed. Pvt. Young's bold action in closing with this Japanese pillbox, and thus diverting its fire, permitted his platoon to disengage itself, without loss, and was responsible for several enemy casualties.
Medal of Honor Recipient Rodger W. Young
Medal of Honor Recipient Rodger W. Young
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Clyde, Sandusky County, Ohio
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: January 17, 1944
    Fort Knox, Kentucky, presented by Maj. Gen. Charles Scott to his family
  • Born: April 28, 1918, Tiffin, Seneca County, OH, United States
  • Died: July 31, 1943, New Georgia, Solomon Islands
  • Buried: McPherson Cemetery (PM) (2), Clyde, OH, United States
  • Location of Medal: Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center, Fremont, OH

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