Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

  • Filter Recipient Database here
    • Service Branch
    • Conflict / Era
    • Additional Filters

World War II - U.S. Navy

Samuel Glenn Fuqua

  • Rank: Captain (rank at time of action: Lieutenant Commander)
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    U.S.S. Arizona
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Navy
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: December 7, 1941
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Territory, USA

For distinguished conduct in action, outstanding heroism, and utter disregard of his own safety above and beyond the call of duty during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor, by Japanese forces on 7 December 1941. Upon the commencement of the attack, Lt. Comdr. Fuqua rushed to the quarterdeck of the U.S.S. Arizona, to which he was attached, where he was stunned and knocked down by the explosion of a large bomb which hit the quarterdeck, penetrated several decks, and started a severe fire. Upon regaining consciousness, he began to direct the fighting of the fire and the rescue of the wounded and injured personnel. Almost immediately there was a tremendous explosion forward, which made the ship appear to rise out of the water, shudder, and settle down by the bow rapidly. The whole forward part of the ship was enveloped in flames which were spreading rapidly, and wounded and burned men were pouring out of the ship to the quarterdeck. Despite these conditions, his harrowing experience, and severe enemy bombing and strafing at the time, Lt. Comdr. Fuqua continued to direct the fighting of the fires in order to check them while the wounded and burned could be taken from the ship, and supervised the rescue of these men in such an amazingly calm and cool manner and with such excellent judgment that it inspired everyone who saw him and undoubtedly resulted in the saving of many lives. After realizing the ship could not be saved and that he was the senior surviving officer aboard, he directed it to be abandoned, but continued to remain on the quarterdeck and directed abandoning ship and rescue of personnel until satisfied that all personnel that could be had been saved, after which he left his ship with the boatload. The conduct of Lt. Comdr. Fuqua was not only in keeping with the highest traditions of the Naval Service but characterizes him as an outstanding leader of men.

Medal of Honor Recipient Samuel G. Fuqua
Medal of Honor Recipient Samuel G. Fuqua
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Laddonia, Audrain County, Missouri
  • Awarded Posthumously: No
  • Presentation Date & Details: March 19, 1942

    U.S. Naval Training Station, Newport, Rhode Island, presented by Adm. Royal E. Intersoll

  • Born: October 15, 1899, Laddonia, Audrain County, MO, United States
  • Died: January 27, 1987, Decatur, GA, United States
  • Buried: Arlington National Cemetery (MH) (59-485), Arlington, VA, United States

Questions? For More Information Contact Us!