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PFC Melvin Earl “Bud” Biddle
World War II Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. He served in the United States Army during World War I as a Private in Company B of the 1st Battalion, 517th Parachute Infantry Regiment. On December 23-24, 1944, near Soy, Belgium, he reconnoitered the German lines alone, killed three enemy snipers, and silenced four hostile machine gun emplacements. When rumor spread that he was to be decorated for his actions, Biddle approached his company commander to protest, but was quickly dismissed. Biddle was seriously wounded a few days later by German artillery. For his actions during the battle near Soy, Biddle was awarded the Medal of Honor in ceremonies at the White House on October 30, 1945, by President Harry Truman. He traveled by train from Anderson to Washington, D.C.; while enroute he was promoted to the rank of corporal. When presenting the medal to him, President Truman whispered "People don't believe me when I tell them that I'd rather have one of these than be President." He was also awarded the Bronze Star, Purple Heart and Combat Infantryman Badge. Biddle worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs for many years. He passed away at Saint John's Medical Center in Anderson, Indiana.