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Korean War - U.S. Marine Corps

Walter Carleton Monegan Jr.

Details
  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: Korean War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company F, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines,
    1st Marine Division (Rein)
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: September 17, 1950
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Sosa-ri, Korea
Citation
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a rocket gunner attached to Company F, and in action against enemy aggressor forces. Dug in on a hill overlooking the main Seoul highway when six enemy tanks threatened to break through the battalion position during a predawn attack on 17 September, Pfc. Monegan promptly moved forward with his bazooka, under heavy hostile automatic-weapons fire and engaged the lead tank at a range of less than 50 yards. After scoring a direct hit and killing the sole surviving tankman with his carbine as he came through the escape hatch, he boldly fired two more rounds of ammunition at the oncoming tanks, disorganizing the attack and enabling our tank crews to continue blasting with their 90-mm guns. With his own and an adjacent company's position threatened by annihilation when an overwhelming enemy tank-infantry force bypassed the area and proceeded toward the battalion command post during the early morning of September 20, he seized his rocket launcher and, in total darkness, charged down the slope of the hill where the tanks had broken through. Quick to act when an illuminating shell lit the area, he scored a direct hit on one of the tanks as hostile rifle and automatic-weapons fire raked the area at close-range. Again exposing himself, he fired another round to destroy a second tank and, as the rear tank turned to retreat, stood upright to fire and was fatally struck down by hostile machine-gun fire when another illuminating shell silhouetted him against the sky. Pfc. Monegan's daring initiative, gallant fighting spirit, and courageous devotion to duty were contributing factors in the success of his company in repelling the enemy, and his self-sacrificing efforts throughout sustain and enhance the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
Medal of Honor Recipient Walter C. Monegan Jr.
Medal of Honor Recipient Walter C. Monegan Jr.
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Seattle, King County, Washington
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: February 8, 1952
    The Pentagon, presented by Under Sec. of the Navy Francis P. Whitehair to his Widow
  • Born: December 25, 1930, Melrose, Middlesex County, MA, United States
  • Died: September 20, 1950, Korea
  • Buried: Arlington National Cemetery (MH) (34-4513), Arlington, VA, United States
 

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