Please list your UNSUNG military hero (just one please) and what they did so that they and their actions may be remembered.
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October 10, 2005, 06:31 PM
During the high water mark of Pickett's Charge on 3 July 1863 the colors of the 14th Tennessee Infantry C.S.A. were planted 50 yards in front of the center of Sgt. Maj. Hincks' regiment. There were no Confederates standing near it but several were lying down around it. Upon a call for volunteers by Major Ellis to capture this flag, this soldier and two others leaped the wall. One companion was instantly shot. Sgt. Maj. Hincks outran his remaining companion running straight and swift for the colors amid a storm of shot. Swinging his saber over the prostrate Confederates and uttering a terrific yell, he seized the flag and hastily returned to his lines. The 14th Tennessee carried twelve battle honors on its flag. The devotion to duty shown by Sgt. Maj. Hincks gave encouragement to many of his comrades at a crucial moment of the battle.
October 10, 2005, 06:41 PM
"Dog." 95 pounds of shepard-something mix Scout Dog working with Hotel 3/5 Marines August 1970 in the northern A Shau valley.
Named after the canine in John Wayne's movie "Big Jake" and had a personality to match.
Broke away from his handler, pushed the point man off the trail, and from everything we could see intentionally ran into a boobytrap, setting it off before we got to it. That action sprang an ambush prematurely.
We had zero causalties besides "Dog." 8 bodies, 2 separate body parts from 2 separate bodies, and more blood trails than we wanted to count or follow.
I know of 5 namesakes of that hero, including my chow-lab mix. Had to put her down many years ago. She was the first & only dog I ever had.
As for humans, the only one that I think comes close was my platoon sergeant - some butt-head named McCarty if memory serves me. He taught me more about why a man should always act with honor, truth, and integrity than anybody else I've ever met. I just wish I had learned that lesson from somebody who showed those characteristics, instead of having to live with somebody who was totally lacking in them.
October 10, 2005, 06:58 PM
1st Lt [name forgotten] (Airborne) who taught me that, "The first time you quit is the hardest. After that it becomes a habit."
October 10, 2005, 07:03 PM
Hm, ill take this as an oppurtunity.
Big huge thanks to all the brave men, women, and animals who have given their service to keep the world as good men would have it.
if i could salute with honor, by god i would, but i shall not insult you with a crappy slaute. :D
Seriously, many thanks.
October 10, 2005, 07:13 PM
My father and all my uncles who served in WWII. My Dad was in the Army in Asia one of my uncles was in the Coast Guard and another ran away from home when he was 14 to join the Merchant Marines under my dad's name and rode the convoys carrying war supplies to England. After the war he joined the NAvy and served in the Sea Beas.
October 10, 2005, 07:38 PM
This week, its my kid, who just left for the Navy last Tuesday. After basic, he plans to be a Corpsman.
October 10, 2005, 08:13 PM
Every one of them I'll never have the honor of meeting. :(
(And, of course, Gen. Tom Franks, US Army; my uncle Donald Ansley, USN; and Doc, US Army.)
By the way, Azrael256, I owe you both a beer next time he's in town. :)
October 10, 2005, 08:25 PM
My First Cousin PVT. Rodney Perry. Drafted. Died in Vietnam. I was only 10 at the time. His service has always been honored by me. He was his mother and fathers only son. He was 19 years old. His death taught me to NEVER support anything that resembled left wing politics and the dishonor of those back home showed to men like him still and will always make my blood boil.
October 10, 2005, 09:14 PM
Good thread. Thanks!
My uncle Virgil, who I never got a chance to know, killed at Iwo Jima in a kamakaze attack several years before I was born.
My father, now deceased, a 25 year Naval veteran who saw action in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam.
All the fathers, uncles, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters who made the supreme sacrifice and never came home.
October 10, 2005, 10:41 PM
I think it's best to assume every soldier is a hero, by default. I don't think it's reasonable to expect witnesses to most heroic actions.
October 10, 2005, 11:13 PM
I can think of three in my own family.
Paternal Grandfather was a sgt. who joined the Army near the end of WWII. He saw some action on a few pacific islands as well as being part of the occupation force in Japan. He later did some duty in Korea as an MP. May he rest in peace.
Paternal Great uncle was a sgt. who shipped out on d-day and reenforced the guys who had already stormed the beach. He was there with the division that liberated Dachau (I have pictures of him there...along with pictures of other things)
Maternal grandfather was a Seaman in the navy during the second half of WWII. He operated sonar on a couple different ships and helped keep convoys safe (some in the Atlantic, but mostly in the Pacific) from German and Japanese attack.
While neither was decorated much if any, they served their country and helped others.
I don't know if that makes them heroes to others, but they are my heroes.
October 11, 2005, 12:48 AM
My best friend HM2 Ruben Munoz. He was recently in Iraq as a corpsman with the 2/24 Marines, and is a paramedic with Miami-Dade FD, plus a registered nurse in a trauma center in Miami. We were in the fleet together as firefighters before we made the switch to the world of grunts, and we were lucky enough to run into each other in Baghdad.
The Corps let him have the weekend off from MOUT training to come be my best man right before we both deployed. He came in from several days in the field, walked an hour to the rental car place, then drove all night from Pendleton to Phoenix to stand up next to me.
He is a complete badass, an amazingly nice person, and both my best friend and my personal hero.
October 11, 2005, 01:14 AM
My Grandfather, Benjamin H. Garlich. Drafted for WWII, boot and AIT in texas, in Europe by his 20th birthday. Survivor of Salerno Beach (dug out by 101 Airborne, went to all funerals within driving distance until he passed) marched the length of Italy, was sent to Asia after the European Theater ended, thankfully the war ended there before he went into combat. Of his unit (sorry, I don't know the numbers but it was Corps of Engineers) he was one of 16 to survive the entire war.
At Salerno Beach he vowed to become a preacher if God let him live. He was an atheist until the following day when the 101st showed up to bail them out. After discharge, attended Baptist Bible College and spent the next 37 years as a Baptist minister.
Without a doubt, the most likeable, determined, forthright and honest person I have ever known. My son, Benjamin David Garlich is named after him and my father.
1 old 0311
October 11, 2005, 06:18 AM
Carlos' white feather' Hatchcock. 93 confirmed kills in Vietnam. RIP.
October 11, 2005, 07:57 AM
A young Lt whose patrol was caught in an ambush in Afghanistan, one of his men killed and two others badly wounded. Got the rest to a safe zone when he counted and found 4 men were missing. Took three men back into the ambush to rescue the men who were pinned down in their disabled vehicle. Jammed all 8 guys into a Humvee while under extensive enemy fire and RPG attack, high tailed it back to the safe zone with their Hummer in flames. All eight were unharmed. The young Lt is my hero, best friend, and my son.
October 11, 2005, 08:09 AM
H. W. McBride (http://pw2.netcom.com/~chingesh/mcbride.html).
October 11, 2005, 09:12 AM
...carried me away from a mob of angry Neopolitans after they beat on me for a while. 270 pound redneck from WVA named Peaches. I was pretty bloody, as the Italians were pretty pissed at me. (I was wearing my Manchester United football club jersey from England. These European soccer fans are friggin crazy!) I'm certain he saved my life, because I had worked some damage before I went down, and they were looking for revenge. God bless that man. He broke onme guys arms, picked me up fireman-style, and carried me back on board the ship, where the comfort of watchstanders with M-14s welcomed me back on US soil. I gave Peaches the jersey, which is blood stained and torn and hangs in his shop with pride.
October 11, 2005, 10:58 AM
My grandfather, who crewed an LST in the Pacific during WWII. Spent two days in the water while injured after his LST was hit by mortar fire and sunk. Held an injured crew member until they were pulled out of the water. I have the honor of possessing his Purple Heart and his knife, the only piece of gear that he didn't ditch while in the water.
My wife's gradfather, a B-17 pilot in Europe. When his plane was hit bad, he ordered the crew out and went down with his plane, somewhere in the Channel. He eared a Brinze Star, I believe.
October 11, 2005, 11:08 AM
Every single one who went in harms way to do what I never had to. Thank you! And an extra special thanks to my family members who have fought from the French and Indian wars to Vietnam.
October 11, 2005, 11:08 AM
The 4 D.I.'s who turned a once rebellious long haired teenager into a former Marine.
October 11, 2005, 11:15 AM
1. My father, career army man.
Volunteered in WW II. Served in combat in Europe (Italy mostly).
Served in combat in Korea.
Served in combat in Vietnam.
After surviving all that, he retired as a full Colonel, and died in a year from smoking related heart disease.
I will always remember him as my hero.
2. My nephew -- Air Force officer (now a Captain). Back seater in a F15 Strike Eagle. Was in combat over Ashcanistan during the take down of the Taliban.
Served in Iraq. He was one of those on CAP when they dug Saddam out of his hole.
He is also my hero.
And all the others serving in our Armed forces, that only their relatives and friends will ever know about. They too, are my heros.
October 11, 2005, 11:29 AM
What rate is Peaches?
October 11, 2005, 11:34 AM
During WWII he released his men from their duty station to permit them to seek cover while he manned the battlion radio net alone, under direct fire from German 88's. He survived. Now thats GUTS!
October 11, 2005, 11:40 AM
Oh, and my Grandfather.
He was a mere tank Driver in WWII. During the Battle of the Bulge, he and his crew were captured. When they were taken out to be shot, the German officers turned thier sidearms over to the POW's and surrendered. They then cooperated to get back to Allied lines.
My dad has both telegrams, the one informing my Great Grandmother of his capture, and of his release.
October 11, 2005, 12:49 PM
First of all, The Unsung Heroes are all of those nameless men & women in ALL branches of service.
We will never know their names, faces, or anything else about them...But they ARE heroes.
Now specifically, my grandfathers on both sides of family. WWI "Doughboys". Grandfather on Moms side died before I was born. Tuberculosis, Doc said the Mustard Gas he inhaled had already damaged his lungs quite a bit.
Dad was a WWII Army Infantryman, earned a Silver Star in Pacific Theatre. Mrs. Foggy's Dad was a ground crewman (Army Air Corps, I think it was called then) Patched up and 'reloaded' the B-17's/B-25's, and some fighter planes, too...Maybe the Corsair, not sure.
Oldest brother was Air Force Surgical Scrub Tech during VietNam.
Nephew is currently a United States Marine Lance Corporal, last I heard, somewhere near Fallujah.
October 11, 2005, 01:00 PM
(Rank Unknown) Dale Calhoun, Signal Corps, WWII Pacific Theatre. Never talked about it, except to say that they did all their work at night in No-Man's Land, and got shot at by both sides since each thought they were the enemy.
James T Thomas
October 11, 2005, 04:57 PM
On 3 Dec. 1968, company D, 2/7 Cav. of the First Air Cav. was flown into what was an unextractable and unreinforcable ambush by a vastly superior enemy force in S. Vietnam. Sgt. White manned our only 81 mm mortar tube to give the rifle platoons supportive fire, and gunning that erect tube in the flat field of the ambush placed him as the target for all the surrounding enemy fire! Myself and the others of the crew prepared the round charges, and when ready, exposed ourselves to drop in those rounds and make gun adjustments. There Sgt. White stood his ground, rapidly cranking the adjustment wheel; all the while, three 12.6 mm guns were firing at us. We had fired all the rounds we had except for two, and had dropped down while they were prepared. I had turned around to get one of the rounds when I felt a consussion blast and heat; the tube was struck with a rocket round. End of our fire mission, but not of the brave Sgt. White.
This all day long battle for our lives is recorded in .military.com. >Vietnam >Articles > "No DEROS DELTA" written by brave Steve Banko III -a fellow survivor.
Through the years I have hoped to meet Chas. White of Washington, D.C.; if anyone knows of him please contact me here!
October 11, 2005, 06:30 PM
A southerner by birth. He rallied the remnants of the Army of the Cumberland after a Union screwup coinciding with Longstreets divisional attack cut the Union force in half and drove some two thirds of it from the field in a rout. He skillfully held his command and bled Bragg's Army of the Tennessee white as it tried to dislodge Thomas and his tattered command from Horseshoe Ridge.
For his stand that day at Chicamauga he was rewarded with overall command of the Cumberland. He also earned the nickname "Rock Of Chicamauga".
In November of that year his troops(not neccessarily following orders) overreached their limited attack at Missionary ridge and, again, drove Bragg's army from the field. This left Grant and Sherman, who were in overall command that day, standing there with their mouths agape after beating themselves senseless against Cleburne's Command on the Confederate right.
In the closing months of the war he again drove from the field and destroyed the same army that was under command of Joseph E. Johnson at the battle of Nashville. The survivors just melted away and never took the field again.
We can't forget his crushing a small confederate Army at Mill Springs Kentucky in the early days of the war which gave the Union its first victory after the dark days of Bull Run.
His only real failure was not being on US Grant's good side. Coupled with a distrust of those of southern birth he rarely gets the recognition he deserves.
October 11, 2005, 06:58 PM
Generally all men and women of all five services who have ever served so that we may sit at our computers writing these threads.
Personally my father, Warren H. Sears, MD,USNR,Medical Corps in the Pacific during WW II and then 11 yrs in the VA. He was the doctor who brought me into this world on a hospital gurney between the ambulance and the VA ER after I decided to leave the womb 3 weeks early and the ambulance didn't make it to the County Hospital.
October 11, 2005, 07:11 PM
The soldiers of the 3rd United States Infantry (The Old Guard)
In addition to their recent deployment to Africa in support of the Global War on Terror, these soldiers (who normally do ceremonies in the DC area) were the main search and recovery force at the Pentagon after from 9/11 until the job was done. I was proud to be with them at that time.
By the way, i'm medically cleared for deployment and in the middle of "refresher training"
I should link up with my unit at the end of the month (probably a national guard mechanized infantry unit) then "over there."
Mongo the Mutterer
October 11, 2005, 07:18 PM
I'll say what my Pop says...
The heroes he knew are buried in Punchbowl Cemetary in Honolulu.
Pop = USMC, 6th division, 15th Marines
Okinawa, Saipan, Guadalcanal.
He is my hero.
October 12, 2005, 09:48 AM
my grandfather a member of the army corps of engineers. fought in 7 major campaigns of the pacific.
my other grandfather, member of the US navy in WW2 and served on an aircraft carrier.
My father, who never dodged the draft and enlisted in the air force in 1967.
My friend Tom, a member of the US Army's 173rd Airborne and now serving in Afghanistan.
My friend Ed, a navy corpsman currently in Iraq.
oh and everyone else who gives a damn about this country and puts their butt on the line for it.
October 12, 2005, 10:03 AM
Unsung military hero?
That's easy: Major General James Longstreet, CSA
Just before Appomattox, at Long Bridge, after fleeing from Richmond in 1865, with more than 2/3 of his Army of Northern Virgina melted away, starved, mostly weaponless, and severly depleted ranks from his recent battle at Sailor's Creek, with Union infantry and cavalry troops almost surrounding them, General Lee asked General Longstreet whether they should surrender? General Longstreet thought a bit, then said, "Not Yet."
If such Generals existed today wars would fought as they are suppose to be fought; with every fiber of one's being!
October 12, 2005, 10:31 AM
That's easy: Major General James Longstreet, CSA No kidding...
Minor thread hijack: If Lee had paid attention to Longstreet more often then IMO it is highly likely that the North American continent would have one more nation on it's soil today than it does. (not a good thing - the extra nation I mean).
Longstreet is a much overlooked General in US Military History - depending on one's POV he may very well have been the best of the best.
:End of Hijack...
October 12, 2005, 11:11 AM
My Granfadther, Nick Polito, USA WWI
He immigrated to the US in 1912/13. Was inducted into the National Army in 1917 , Camp Dix NJ, and went to France. One evening over a gallon of red wine he told me some stories in 1977. Said one night he was in a big fight. His position was the center of a trench, one man to his right in a corner of the trench, the other name Dutch on the left. Dutch was saying all during the fight that his arm was hot but kept shooting. When the sun came up Grampa saw his friend on the right was dead but Dutch was still standing. He went to see Dutch and found he was dead and still holding his rifle against a tree he'd been bracing his rifle against. His trigger finger hand and arm was shot up and he bled to death, Germans shot at his muzzle flash and got him. Now Grampa returned to his part of the trench and a German was there. They fought and Grampa didn't finish the story.
Next he told me about instructions US soldiers were given incase they were wounded to follow the purple wire back for help, to get it in your hand and don't let go till you found aid. All his medals and papers were stolen in a house burlary when some loser stole my Grandma's jewelry. The US Army records were lost in a 1972 fire. What I can gather is he was in the Lightning Division, the battle he described was the Argonne Offensive in October 1918.
After the Armistice was signed he and other Americans were celebrating in a French bar and a fight broke out, a French MP was going to bayonet an American soldier so everyone piled on the Frenchmen and beat the heck out of him. They took souveneers and Grampa got the Lebel bayonet. He hid it in the bottom of his foot locker, which he said was a stupid thing to do but it went undiscovered. I saw it once and it had a brass handle, cruciform blade with scabbard. It was lost in a house fire a few years ago.
Grandma blamed his bad temper on the mustard gas. He mostly wore long sleeve shirts and when I saw him wash up his arms were so scarred up it looked like ruts in a road. Grampa died in 1980.
W.D. Raftery: I knew Bill he taught me to shoe my horses and some others alot about the US horse cavalry of pre WWII. When he was "dehorsed" in April 1942 he joined the Rangers. Was in the 2nd Rangers, among other landings he went up Point du Hoc. He'd tell mostly humorous stories but did not say much about himself or the hard parts of war, and when he died in 1998 his obituary said he'd received 2 Silver Stars and Purple Hearts.
He did call his Purple Hearts my "1st Bulletversary" , 2nd and so on. He knew Gen Patton.
He wouldn't revisit Normandy , said to me "all he left there was alot of friends and bad memories."
I think of them everyday.
October 12, 2005, 02:00 PM
Captain Third Class Aleksandr Marinesco. A brilliant submarine captain in the Soviet Navy in WWII, commander of the S-13, the only surviving submarine in the Baltic Fleet. S-13 was responsible for 1/8 of the tonnage sunk by the fleet.
He disobeyed orders and changed course, which led him to finding and sinking the "Wilhelm Gustloff", Hitler's favorite cruise ship. S-13 ran at night, on the surface, with hatches dogged. Marinesco was up at the tower with the lookout, ready to give the order to dive if they were discovered. Diving would have meant his death in the winter sea.
"Wilhelm Gustloff" carried 1000 trainees for the U-boat fleet and other German Navy personnel. Unfortunately, it also carried civilian passengers. Because of that and because of Marinesco being not very good at toeing the party line he and his entire crew were not given the appropriate recognition.
As soon as the war was over he was kicked out of the navy. In his civilian life he was falsely accused of theft and went to prison. He died in poverty and anonymity. His name was struck from the history books. Some sailors chipped in and built a memorial to him, but the Ministry of the Navy sent someone to pry the plaque with his name off it. The only reason I know about him is that my grandmother chanced to find his grave at a St. Peterburg Cemetery and pointed it out to me one day. We would always clean it up when we passed by.
I guess that's about as unsung as you can get.
October 12, 2005, 04:04 PM
Theodore "Ted" Krein, He comes to mind because of his story. A Ukarainian school teacher , taken from his wife and children, drafted into the Nazi Army and made a driver of a staff car. He didn't last long as a soldier, captured by the Soviets and spent 17 years in a prison/coal mine of Siberia.
Now another important part about his story was the American GI's he knew and was imprisoned with.
He said " the Americans were not friendly with him but one he remembered was named Albert."
I asked what the Americans ever said to him and they were not allowed to speak to each other. Americans were not allowed to send or recieve letters, Ted was. He said they were bitter that their country forgot them. Somewhere I have a copy of his manuscript and a map he marked.
His wife and family had emigrated to New York state where he finally met them about 1960.
Whenever Ted repeated the story he said " god Bless Eisenhower, he got me out". He said he never "fired his weapon, thank God."
I believe his story about the GI's, he had no reason to lie and wasn't that kind of person anyhow.
October 12, 2005, 04:20 PM
The almost completely forgotten men who flew the rag-tag assortment of Catalinas and P-40 "Aleutian Tigers" against the Japanese invasion force, trying to keep the Japs pinned down. Also, the men of the 7th ID who liberated Attu, suffering the second highest casualty rate of any US forces in the war.
October 12, 2005, 11:23 PM
Everyone who helped my father make it through a couple years in Vietnam with only one scratch. He speaks very fondly of the ROK soldiers he was based with for a while.
October 13, 2005, 07:40 AM
...Peaches is his name. He's an STG1.
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