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King, Thomas E.

Date of death:
September 3rd, 1944 (France)
Buried on:
Epinal American Cemetery and Memorial
Nationality:
American (1776 - present, Republic)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Private
Unit:
22nd Armored Engineer Battalion, 5th Armored Division "Victory Division" U.S. Army (22nd Armored Engineer Battalion, 5th Armored Division "Victory Division" U.S. Army)
The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Thomas E. King (34213697), Private, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving with the 22d Armored Engineer Battalion, 5th Armored Division, in action against enemy forces on 3 September 1944, in France. Detecting an enemy armored column as it approached his outpost on a narrow city street, Private King, without hesitation and with utter disregard for his life, engaged the column single-handedly with his machine gun. His position offered no protection from the continuous point-blank fire of machine guns, pistols and grenades hurled by the enemy, but Private King remained staunch as the enemy reached a point less than ten yards away. Although his rifle belt was shot from his hips, this valiant soldier continued to pour devastating fire from his weapon until it suddenly jammed. Private King was frantically attempting to put his gun into operation when he was mortally wounded by a burst of enemy fire. His courageous and valorous efforts deterred the enemy column long enough to permit his company and adjacent units to secure positions and to inflict disastrous casualties and heavy loss of equipment on the enemy. Private King's intrepid actions, personal bravery and zealous devotion to duty at the cost of his life, exemplify the highest traditions of the military forces of the United States and reflect great credit upon himself, the 5th Armored Division, and the United States Army.

Posthumously awarded. Headquarters, First U.S. Army, General Order No. 3 (January 4, 1945).

Distinguished Service Cross (DSC)

Sources

  • - Hillery, V. & Hurley, E., Paths of Armor The Fifth Armored Division in World War II, The Battery Press, Nashville, USA, 1985
    - homeofheroes.com
    - 5ad.org

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