- Second World War (1939-1945)
- Private (Marine)
- 3rd Battalion - 2nd Marine Regiment - 2nd Marine Division
- Awarded on:
- January 18th, 1945
The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Private Norman Arsenault (MCSN: 546791), United States Marine Corps Reserve, for extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty while serving with the Third Battalion, Second Marines, SECOND Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces at Saipan, Marianas Islands, on 8 July 1944. With his platoon pinned down by intense, concentrated hostile machine-gun and rifle fire from a well-concealed enemy emplacement during a perilous advance along the beach, Private Arsenault boldly exposed himself to the intense barrage to wade out into the ocean where he could observe the enemy and direct his effective fire into the entrenchment. After expending his ammunition, he fearlessly returned to the beach to replenish his supply then again resumed his position, drawing all hostile fire to himself and enabling his platoon to advance and launch an attack against the strategic cave. Ordered to return to his platoon, he was fatally struck down by bursting enemy shellfire while crossing the open expanse. By his valiant fighting spirit, great personal valor and self-sacrificing efforts, Private Arsenault had accounted for twenty Japanese soldiers and was directly responsible for the success of his platoon in capturing the strongly fortified hostile emplacement. His unwavering devotion to duty throughout the fierce engagement was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
Commander in Chief Pacific Forces: Serial 12601 (January 18, 1945)