USS HALYBURTON


Medal of Honor Citation

Ship ImageFor conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with a Marine Rifle Company in the 2d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division, during action against the enemy Japanese forces on Okinawa Shima in the Ryukyu Chain on 10 May 1945. Undaunted by the deadly accuracy of Japanese counterfire as his unit pushed the attack through a strategically important draw and up the hill into an open fireswept field where the Company advance squad was suddenly pinned down under a terrific concentration of mortar, machinegun, and sniper fire with resultant severe casualties. Moving steadily forward despite the enemy's merciless barrage, he reached the wounded Marine who lay farthest away and was rendering first aid when his patient was struck for the second time by a Japanese bullet. Instantly placing himself in the direct line of fire, he shielded the fallen fighter with his own body and staunchly continued his ministrations although constantly menaced by the slashing fury of shrapnel and bullets falling at his sides. Alert, determined, and completely unselfish in his concern for the helpless Marine, he persevered in his efforts until he himself sustained mortal wounds and collapsed, heroically sacrificing himself that his comrade might live. By his outstanding valor and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of tremendous odds, Petty Officer Halyburton sustained and enhanced the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country.