Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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World War II - U.S. Army

William D McGee

  • Rank: Private
  • Conflict/Era: World War II
  • Unit/Command:
    Medical Detachment, 304th Infantry,
    76th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: March 18, 1945
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Mulheim, Germany

A medical aidman, he made a night crossing of the Moselle River with troops endeavoring to capture the town of Mulheim. The enemy had retreated in the sector where the assault boats landed, but had left the shore heavily strewn with antipersonnel mines. Two men of the first wave attempting to work their way forward detonated mines which wounded them seriously, leaving them bleeding and in great pain beyond the reach of their comrades. Entirely on his own initiative, Pvt. McGee entered the minefield, brought out one of the injured to comparative safety, and had returned to rescue the second victim when he stepped on a mine and was severely wounded in the resulting explosion. Although suffering intensely and bleeding profusely, he shouted orders that none of his comrades was to risk his life by entering the death-sown field to render first aid that might have saved his life. In making the supreme sacrifice, Pvt. McGee demonstrated a concern for the well-being of his fellow soldiers that transcended all considerations for his own safety and a gallantry in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service.

Medal of Honor Recipient William D. McGee
Medal of Honor Recipient William D. McGee
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: February 23, 1946

    Presented to his widow by Brig. Gen. John E. McMahon at Fort Benjamin Harrison, Lawrence Township, Indiana.

  • Born: 1923, Indianapolis, Marion County, IN, United States
  • Died: March 18, 1945, Germany
  • Buried: A.B.M.C. Luxembourg Cemetery (MH) (C-7-13), Luxembourg, France
  • Location of Medal: Indiana War Memorials, Indianapolis, IN

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