Thomas, William H., PFC

Fallen
 
 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Private First Class
Last Service Branch
Infantry
Last Primary MOS
746-Automatic Rifleman
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1945-1945, 38th Infantry Division
Service Years
1942 - 1945

Private First Class


 Last Photo   Personal Details 


Home State
Arkansas
Arkansas
Year of Birth
1923
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by S. Kimbrow to remember Thomas, William H., Pfc.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Wynne
Last Address
Ypsilanti, Michigan

Casualty Date
Apr 22, 1945
 
Cause
Hostile, Died of Wounds
Reason
Multiple Fragmentation Wounds
Location
Philippines
Conflict
Combat and Noncombat Operations
Location of Interment
Manila American Cemetery - Taguig City, Philippines
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Plot: F-16-90

 Official Badges 




 Unofficial Badges 




 Military Association Memberships
World War II Fallen
  1945, World War II Fallen [Verified]

 Photo Album   (More...


 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 1st Award


 
 Unit Assignments
1st Battalion, 149th Infantry Regiment38th Infantry Division
  1945-1945, 1st Battalion, 149th Infantry Regiment
  1945-1945, 38th Infantry Division
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1944-1944 Leyte Campaign (1944-45)/Battle of Leyte
  1945-1945 Luzon Campaign (1944-45)/Battle for Recapture of Bataan
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
PFC Thomas served with Company B, 149th Infantry Regiment, 38th Infantry Division in the South Pacific.  The unit went into action in December 1944 in Leyte.

During a firefight in the Zambales Mountains, Luzon,  Philippines, Thomas continued to fight even after being mortally wounded by an explosion which blew off both of his legs. He died later that day and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor five months later on 24 September 1945.

PFC Thomas, aged 22 at his death, was buried at the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial in the Philippines, in Plot: F-16-90.


 
 
Medal of Honor Citation

Awarded posthumously for actions during the World War II

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Private First Class William H. Thomas, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty on 22 April 1945, while serving with 149th Infantry Regiment, 38th Infantry Division, in action at Zambales Mountains, Luzon, Philippine Islands.

Private First Class Thomas was a member of the leading squad of Company B, which was attacking along a narrow, wooded ridge. The enemy strongly entrenched in camouflaged emplacements on the hill beyond directed heavy fire and hurled explosive charges on the attacking riflemen. Private First Class Thomas, an automatic rifleman, was struck by one of these charges, which blew off both his legs below the knees. He refused medical aid and evacuation, and continued to fire at the enemy until his weapon was put out of action by an enemy bullet. Still refusing aid, he threw his last two grenades. He destroyed three of the enemy after suffering the wounds from which he died later that day.

The effective fire of Private First Class Thomas prevented the repulse of his platoon and assured the capture of the hostile position. His magnificent courage and heroic devotion to duty provided a lasting inspiration for his comrades.

General Orders: War Department, General Orders No. 81, September 24, 1945
Action Date: 22-Apr-45
Service: Army
Rank: Private First Class
Regiment: 149th Infantry Regiment
Division: 38th Infantry Division
   
Comments/Citation
Notes/Links:

http://militarytimes.com/citations-medals-awards/recipient.php?recipientid=3288 (MOH Citation/photo)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/38th_Infantry_Division_(United_States) (combat chronicle) http://www.findagrave.com/ (grave marker photo)
   
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