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Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

William A McWhorter

  • Rank: Private First Class (Highest Rank: Sergeant)
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    Company M, 126th Infantry,
    32d Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: December 5, 1944
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Leyte, Philippine Islands
He displayed gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in operations against the enemy. Pfc. McWhorter, a machine gunner, was emplaced in a defensive position with one assistant when the enemy launched a heavy attack. Manning the gun and opening fire, he killed several members of an advancing demolition squad, when one of the enemy succeeded in throwing a fused demolition charge in the entrenchment. Without hesitation and with complete disregard for his own safety, Pfc. McWhorter picked up the improvised grenade and deliberately held it close to his body, bending over and turning away from his companion. The charge exploded, killing him instantly, but leaving his assistant unharmed. Pfc. McWhorter's outstanding heroism and supreme sacrifice in shielding a comrade reflect the highest traditions of the military service.
Medal of Honor Recipient William A. McWhorter
Medal of Honor Recipient William A. McWhorter
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Liberty, Pickins County, South Carolina
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Born: December 7, 1918, Liberty, Pickins County, SC, United States
  • Died: December 5, 1944, Leyte, Philippine Islands
  • Buried: West View Cemetery (MH), Liberty, SC, United States

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