Robert E. Wood
Robert Elkington Wood (June 13, 1879 – November 6, 1969) was a U.S. Army Brigadier General and businessman best known for his leadership of Sears, Roebuck and Company.
He was born in Kansas City, Missouri and attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, graduating in 1900 as a Second Lieutenant of Cavalry.
As an officer in the United States Army, he was stationed in the Philippines participating in field service during the Philippine insurrection. From 1902 to 1903 he was assigned to Fort Assiniboin, Montana and then for three years as an instructor at West Point. In 1905 he became the Assistant Chief Quartermaster and later the Chief Quartermaster and Director of the Panama Railroad Company. He served in the Panama Canal Zone for ten years, during the construction of the canal.
Wood retired in July 1915, by special act of Congress as a Major. Following this retirement he worked as assistant to the vice president of the E. I. du Pont de Nemours Company and headed operations in the United States, Venezuela, and Trinidad for the General Asphalt Company.He briefly served as Purchasing Agent of the Emergency Fleet Corporation in early 1917.
In 1917, on the eve of America's entry into the First World War he returned to the Army as an Infantry Lieutenant Colonel. He served in Europe with the 42nd (Rainbow) Division and was promoted to Colonel. Toward the end of the war, he was promoted to brigadier general and made acting Quartermaster General of the Army.
Post military career
After the leaving the army again in 1919, Wood became an executive at Montgomery Ward, eventually becoming a vice-president of the company. In 1924, he left Montgomery Ward to take a position of vice-president of Sears Roebuck. He became one of the most important leaders in that company's history, serving as vice-president from 1928 until 1939 and as chairman from 1939 until 1954. Under his leadership, Sears shifted the focus of its operations from mail-order sales to retail sales at large urban department stores. Wood also created Allstate Insurance as a subsidiary of Sears.
Wood, once again, served as an honorary chairman for Sears from 1968 until shortly before his death in 1969, leaving a good portion of his stocks to family members.
Wood was also politically active and was noted as a conservative Republican. In 1940, he helped found the America First Committee to oppose U.S. involvement in the Second World War; he served as the committee's first president on an interim basis. In 1954, Wood funded the creation of the Manion Forum, a conservative radio program hosted by Clarence Manion.
Decorations and honors
Distinguished Service Medal (Army), United States
Knight of the Legion of Honor, France
Companion Order of St Michael and St George, Great Britain
Bronze busts honoring Wood and seven other industry magnates stand between the Chicago River and the Merchandise Mart in downtown Chicago, Illinois. General Wood also has a Boys and Girls Club in Chicago named in his honor.
Gen. Wood was inducted into the Junior Achievement U.S. Business Hall of Fame in 1979.
Alan S. Boyd
Alan Stephenson Boyd (born July 20, 1922) is an American attorney and transportation executive who led several large corporations and also served the U.S. Government in various transportation-related positions. He was the first United States Secretary of Transportation, appointed by Lyndon Johnson. Additionally, he served in executive positions with the Civil Aeronautics Board, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and was a president of Amtrak.
Boyd was born in Jacksonville, Florida to Clarence Boyd and Elizabeth Stephenson Boyd. He graduated from high school in 1939, and graduated from the University of Florida in 1941. He joined the United States Army Air Forces in 1942 and remained there through the end of the war. He married Flavil Juanita Townsend on 3 April 1943. After leaving the service in 1945, Boyd returned to college and received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1948.
He practiced law in Florida, and was on a commission exploring the regulation of the transportation industry.
In 1959, he was appointed to the Civil Aeronautics Board by US President Dwight Eisenhower. He was promoted to chairman of that board by US President John F. Kennedy. He helped the airline industry by standardizing fare reductions and by approving government subsidies to encourage airline service for smaller cities. He was appointed undersecretary of commerce for transportation in 1965 by Lyndon Johnson. He was unpopular with labor leaders when he advocated reducing government restrictions on the maritime industry, and when he denounced featherbedding by railroad workers. Boyd was part of a committee that lobbied for the creation of the United States Department of Transportation, bringing together many government agencies related to the transportation industry.
Boyd became the first Secretary of Transportation in November 1966. In that capacity he worked in many areas including airports, the air traffic control system, automobile safety, driver education, alcoholism, and the highway beautification program (a pet project of first lady Lady Bird Johnson). One of his sources of power was holding funding control over the interstate highways. He was unsuccessful in trying to encourage passenger train service.
When Richard Nixon became US President in 1969, Boyd left the Transportation Department to become the president of the Illinois Central Railroad, a position he held from 1969 to 1972. The federal government investigated the potential conflict of interest because that railroad had received aid from Boyd's department before he resigned, but no wrongdoing was found. Boyd was later the president of Amtrak until June 20, 1982, and the president of Airbus Industrie. In 1979 he became the chairman of Warner Blue & Mahan, a Washington, D.C. based consulting firm working on new technology ventures.
Alan S. Boyd retired to Florida and later moved to Edmonds, Washington.
In 1994, Boyd received the Tony Jannus Award for his contributions to commercial aviation. He also received the 2009 Philip J. Klass Award for Lifetime Achievement from Aviation Week & Space Technology. The citation read: " . . for his lifelong service to aviation, including shaping policy in the U.S."
Violet "Vi" Cowden (October 1, 1916 – April 10, 2011) was an American aviator who served as a member of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) during World War II. Cowden was one of the surviving members of the 1,074 WASPs, who were the first women to fly American military planes.
Cowden was born Violet Thurn and raised on a farm in Bowdle South Dakota. She taught first grade students in Spearfish, South Dakota.
Cowden was issued her pilot's license before the United States entered World War II. She initially enlisted in the a volunteer women's emergency service program following the Attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. However, before her basic training began, Cowden joined another all women's program created by Jacqueline Cochran and General Hap Arnold through the Army Air Corps, which came to be called the Women Airforce Service Pilots, or WASP. However, Cowden who weighed only 92 pounds and stood at just 5-feet-2-inches tall at the time, was too short and too light to join the WASPs. To quickly gain weight she ate bananas and drank milk and to make herself taller she tied a wrap in her hair. She successfully gained the eight additional pounds and two inches needed to enlist.
Cowden was commissioned as a member of the WASPs in March 1943. She successfully flew her first solo flight on March 5, 1943.
The WASPs, including Cowden, became the first women in US history to pilot American military planes. Cowden and other members of WASP did not see combat during World War II. Their mission was to fly military planes from domestic military factories to training sites or military bases in the United States. Cowden became one of only 114 WASP to fly the fighter planes during the war, including the P-47 Thunderbolt, P-39 AiraCobra, P-63 Kingcobra, and her favorite and the "love of her life," the P-51 Mustang.
Cowden, a long-time resident of Huntington Beach, California, remained very active in community affairs throughout her life. She served as the Grand Marshall of Huntington Beach's Independence Day parade. Cowden was also a member of the board of directors for the Bolsa Chica Land Trust and participated in the city's Veterans Day celebration and beach restorations. She participated in "Living History" in which World War II veterans gave speeches and presentations at high schools in southern California. and was on the Board of Directors at the Yanks Air Museum in Chino, CA where they display many of the fighter planes that she flew during WWII and now display her WASP uniform.
Cowden was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 2010, as one of only 300 surviving members of the Women Airforce Service Pilots. Supporters had lobbied for the recognition for WASP for more than a decade. She was also the subject of the 2010 independent film, Wings of Silver: The Vi Cowden Story, directed by Mark & Christine Bonn.Among the 10 awards that her film won was the Audience Award for short films at the Newport Beach Film Festival in 2010.(in less than a year it won 5 Audience Awards and 5 Best Documentary Short awards from film festivals around North America).
Cowden went skydiving with the elite Army Golden Knights when she was 89 years old. On her 90th birthday she decided to go paragliding. In 2010, Cowden took part in an aerial mock dogfight over Fullerton Municipal Airport in Orange County, California.And in 2009 she again flew in the Collings Foundation P-51c Mustang, co-piloting and taking the stick for take off, landing & some fast flying in between.
Violet Cowden died at 8:34 p.m. on April 10, 2011, at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, California, at the age of 94.
Waldemar F. A. Wendt
Waldemar Frederick August Wendt (March 15, 1912 – October 21, 1997) was a four-star admiral in the United States Navy who served as commander in chief of United States Naval Forces Europe from 1968 to 1971.
Born in Millstadt, Illinois to Reverend Paul Wendt and Wilhelmine Thowe, he was appointed in 1929 from the state of Wisconsin to the United States Naval Academy, where he rowed on the Navy crew team and was captain of varsity oarsmen in his final year. Upon graduating, he was commissioned ensign on June 1, 1933.
His first assignment was aboard the battleship Oklahoma. In March 1935 he transferred to the destroyer minelayer Ramsay. Detached in December 1935, he returned to the Academy as assistant coach of crew until June 1936, when he reported aboard the destroyer leader Moffett until June 1939.
World War II
He attended the Naval Postgraduate School from June to September 1939, for instruction in applied communications, but the course was cut short when President Franklin D. Roosevelt instituted Neutrality Patrol operations, in which he was engaged as gunnery officer and first lieutenant aboard the destroyer Bainbridge in the Panama Canal Zone until June 1940. He then served six months as training officer on the staff of Commander Destroyer Squadron Twenty-Seven before being transferred in December to the staff of Commander Destroyer Squadron 30 until September 1943, for duty conducting escort of convoy operations and participating in the invasion of North Africa.
In December 1943, he assumed command of the destroyer Monaghan in the Pacific Fleet. He commanded Monaghan in action during the invasions of the Marshall and Marianas Islands. He was detached from Monaghan in December 1944 and assigned to the Headquarters of the Commander in Chief, United States Fleet, Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, in Washington, D.C. Less than a month later, Monaghan was lost in the 1944 typhoon, with only six survivors.
In late 1945, he became head of the Pacific Section, Fleet Operations Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Navy Department. In 1947, he reported aboard the heavy cruiser Helena to serve as executive officer until July 1948, a tour that began and ended with duty in the Far East, and included a stint as Helena's commanding officer from June to September 1947 during training operations in California waters. In August he returned to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations as administrative assistant to the assistant chief of naval operations (strategic plans).
He was a student in the Strategy and Tactics course at the Naval War College from September 1949 to June 1950, then served for a year as head of the Atlantic, Europe and Middle East Section, Strategic Plans Division, Office of the Assistant Chief of Naval Operations, Navy Department. In August 1951, he joined the staff of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, as General Plans Officer. From August 1953 to June 1954, he commanded Escort Destroyer Division 22; then served on the faculty of the National War College from July 1954 to August 1956, where he was chairman of the committee on the curriculum.
He commanded the amphibious attack transport Rankin from October 4, 1956, to November 9, 1957, and was advanced to Commander Destroyer Squadron 36 in December 1957. From February 1, 1959, he served as head of the Command and Policies Branch, Strategic Plans Division.
As commander in chief of U.S. Naval Forces Europe (left), being welcomed to U.S. European Command headquarters by General David A. Burchinal, 1968.
Promoted to rear admiral, he assumed command on January 17, 1960, of U.S. Naval Forces, Marianas, with additional duty as CINCPAC representative, Marianas-Bonins, as Deputy High Commissioner of the Marianas District of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, and as Deputy Military Governor of the Bonin-Volcano Islands; with headquarters in Guam. In October 1961, he became Commander Destroyer Flotilla 7 (redesignated Cruiser-Destroyer Flotilla 7 on April 1, 1962) with additional duty until November 1961 as Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Force, Pacific Fleet. From August 1962, he was assigned as director of the Strategic Plans Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations.
Advanced to vice admiral, he was appointed deputy commander in chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet and chief of staff and aide to Commander in Chief Atlantic in Norfolk, Virginia on August 9, 1965. He became deputy chief of naval operations (plans and policy) on April 17, 1967.
On May 27, 1968, President Lyndon B. Johnson nominated Wendt for promotion to admiral as commander in chief, U.S. Naval Forces Europe. He was confirmed by the Senate on June 6, 1968, and assumed his duties on July 12, 1968. Headquartered in London, England, Wendt was responsible for all U.S. naval operations in Europe, the eastern Atlantic Ocean, the Mediterranean Sea, North Africa, and the Middle East. He was relieved on June 30, 1971, and placed on the retired list with the grade of admiral on July 1, 1971.
In retirement he served on the Board of Overseers of the Center for Naval Analyses from 1972 to 1983 and resided in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he was a deacon and elder of First Presbyterian Church. He died in 1997.
His decorations include three Distinguished Service Medals, awarded upon completing tours as deputy commander in chief, U.S. Atlantic Command, as deputy chief of naval operations (plans and policy), and as commander in chief, U.S. Naval Forces Europe; the Bronze Star with Combat V, awarded for commanding the destroyer Monaghan in action against enemy forces in the Pacific Area from January 1 to August 15, 1944; and the Legion of Merit, awarded for his service as director of the Strategic Plans Division.
Peter Hearne WWII RAF Fighter Pilot Ace-5 victories, 19/65 Squadron.
Heinrich Sonne (23 February 1917 – 3 December 2011) was a highly decorated Hauptsturmführer der Reserve in the Waffen-SS during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Sonne was born in Riga, Latvia to German parents.
World War II
Sonne served in the 1st SS Infatry Brigade as commander of the Krad-Schützen (motorcycle company). The 1 SS Infantry Brigade (mot) was a unit of the German Waffen SS formed from former concentration camp guards for service in the Soviet Union behind the main front line during the Second World War. They conducted anti-partisan operations in the rear of the advancing German army, and also filled gaps in the front line when called upon in emergencies. Heinrich Sonne won his Knight's Cross for his actions on the front line in the fighting around Smolensk during September 1943. Later, when the 1st SS Infantry Brigade was disbanded in early January 1944, the remaining soldiers, including Heinrich Sonne, were used to form a cadre for the 18th SS Volunteer Panzer Grenadier Division Horst Wessel.
Sonne was one of the very few former Waffen-SS soldiers allowed to join the Bundeswehr. This can be attributed to an unblemished military service record. He served from 1956-1973 in the Bundeswehr, eventually reaching the rank of Oberstleutnant (Lieutenant Colonel).
Awards and decorations
Iron Cross (1939)
2nd Class (7 January 1943)
1st Class (9 June 1943)
Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on 10 December 1943 as SS-Obersturmführer of the reserves and chief of the Krad-Schützen-Kompanie/1.
SS-Infanterie-Brigade (mot.) "Reichsführer SS".
WW2 US Navy ACE 12 Victories VF-22
Alton W. Knappenberger
Alton Warren Knappenberger (December 31, 1923 – June 9, 2008) was a United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military's highest decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions in World War II.
Knappenberger joined the Army from Spring Mount, Pennsylvania in March 1943, and by February 1, 1944 was serving as a private first class in the 30th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. On that day, during the Battle of Cisterna in Italy, Knappenberger held an exposed position alone and harassed the attacking Germans with his automatic rifle until he ran out of ammunition. For his actions during the battle, he was issued the Medal of Honor three months later, on May 26, 1944.
Private First Class Knappenberger's official Medal of Honor citation reads:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action involving actual conflict with the enemy, on February 1, 1944 near Cisterna di Littoria, Italy. When a heavy German counterattack was launched against his battalion, Pfc. Knappenberger crawled to an exposed knoll and went into position with his automatic rifle. An enemy machinegun 85 yards away opened fire, and bullets struck within 6 inches of him. Rising to a kneeling position, Pfc. Knappenberger opened fire on the hostile crew, knocked out the gun, killed 2 members of the crew, and wounded the third. While he fired at this hostile position, 2 Germans crawled to a point within 20 yards of the knoll and threw potato-masher grenades at him, but Pfc. Knappenberger killed them both with 1 burst from his automatic rifle. Later, a second machinegun opened fire upon his exposed position from a distance of 100 yards, and this weapon also was silenced by his well-aimed shots. Shortly thereafter, an enemy 20mm. antiaircraft gun directed fire at him, and again Pfc. Knappenberger returned fire to wound 1 member of the hostile crew. Under tank and artillery shellfire, with shells bursting within 15 yards of him, he held his precarious position and fired at all enemy infantrymen armed with machine pistols and machine-guns which he could locate. When his ammunition supply became exhausted, he crawled 15 yards forward through steady machinegun fire, removed rifle clips from the belt of a casualty, returned to his position and resumed firing to repel an assaulting German platoon armed with automatic weapons. Finally, his ammunition supply being completely exhausted, he rejoined his company. Pfc. Knappenberger's intrepid action disrupted the enemy attack for over 2 hours.
Edward George Wendorf
Ensign WENDY WENDORF, USN
VF-16 (USS Lexington)
Kwajalein Atoll--December 4, 1943
Edward George Wendorf was born on February 22, 1922, in the small central Texas town of West, about 80 miles south of Dallas. He was raised in West and attended school there until 1939, when he went off to the University Texas in Austin on a football scholarship. Between his freshman and sophomore years, Wendorf became interested in aviation. When a friend suggested that for just fifty dollars they could take the Civilian Pilot Training course at Hillsboro Junior College, which was just fifteen miles north of West, Wendorf agreed. At Hillsboro, the young men received all the necessary ground courses and about forty hours of flight time in Piper Cub and Taylorcraft airplanes. Upon completion, they were awarded private pilot's licenses.
Shortly after Pearl Harbor, Ed Wendorf enlisted in the Naval Aviation Cadet program with the stipulation that he would not enter pilot training until June 1, 1942, so he could complete his second year of college. In June, on schedule, the Navy assigned him to the Secondary Civilian Pilot Training center at Browning Field in Austin, where he trained in Waco biplanes. Upon completion of the course at Browning in September 1942, Cadet Wendorf was sent to the Navy's pre-flight school at Athens, Georgia. In December, he was assigned to the Naval Air Station, Dallas, for Primary Flight training. He then went on to Corpus Christi for Basic and Advanced flight training. He was commissioned an ensign and designated a Naval Aviator in June 1943.
After earning his wings, Ensign Wendorf was assigned to Lee Field in Jacksonville, Florida, to train in Grumman F4F Wildcat fighters with an operational training unit. Next he went to Glenview, Illinois, where he qualified for carriers aboard the converted lake steamer USS Sable. He then received orders to report to San Diego for further assignment, and after only one day in San Diego he was put aboard a ship bound for Pearl Harbor.
Sq. Leader Joe Patient WWII RAF Mosquito Bomber Navigator, DFC 139 Sq.59 operations over N. W. Europe.
Robert F. Foley
Robert Franklin Foley (born May 30, 1941) is a retired United States Army Lieutenant General who served in the Vietnam War. Born in Newton, Massachusetts, he received the Medal of Honor for leading his unit, Company A, 2d Battalion, 27th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division, in an assault on a strong enemy position on November 5, 1966. He was awarded the Medal of Honor along with Sgt John F. Baker, Jr., who earned his own medal in the same battle. Foley retired from the Army as a Lieutenant General.
Foley is a 1963 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and was commissioned an Infantry officer. He has held numerous command and staff positions throughout 37 years of active service. He has a Master of Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University.
Foley's command positions include company commander with the 25th Inf. Div. in Vietnam and battalion and brigade command with the 3rd Inf. Div. in Germany. He served as Chief of Staff for the 7th Inf. Div (Light), Fort Ord, CA; Executive Officer to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs; Assistant Division Commander, 2nd Inf. Div., Korea; Commandant of Cadets, United States Military Academy, West Point, NY; Deputy Commanding General, Second US Army, Ft. Gillem, GA; Commanding General, US Army Military District of Washington; and Commanding General, Fifth US Army, Ft. Sam Houston, TX.
Foley's awards for peacetime and combat include the Medal of Honor, two Distinguished Service Medals, the Defense Superior Service Medal, six Legions of Merit, five Meritorious Service Medals, the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart and the Combat Infantryman's Badge. He was also awarded the Parachutist Badge and the Ranger Tab.
After his retirement, he served as President of Marion Military Institute (MMI) in Marion, Alabama. until his resignation at the end of Academic Year 2003-2004. During his tenure at MMI, the school saw tremendous growth and recognition in Alabama, and across the United States. On October 1, 2005 General Foley became the eighth Director of Army Emergency Relief.
Captain Foley's Medal of Honor citation reads:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Capt. Foley's company was ordered to extricate another company of the battalion. Moving through the dense jungle to aid the besieged unit, Company A encountered a strong enemy force occupying well concealed, defensive positions, and the company's leading element quickly sustained several casualties. Capt. Foley immediately ran forward to the scene of the most intense action to direct the company's efforts. Deploying 1 platoon on the flank, he led the other 2 platoons in an attack on the enemy in the face of intense fire. During this action both radio operators accompanying him were wounded. At grave risk to himself he defied the enemy's murderous fire, and helped the wounded operators to a position where they could receive medical care. As he moved forward again 1 of his machine gun crews was wounded. Seizing the weapon, he charged forward firing the machine gun, shouting orders and rallying his men, thus maintaining the momentum of the attack. Under increasingly heavy enemy fire he ordered his assistant to take cover and, alone, Capt. Foley continued to advance firing the machine gun until the wounded had been evacuated and the attack in this area could be resumed. When movement on the other flank was halted by the enemy's fanatical defense, Capt. Foley moved to personally direct this critical phase of the battle. Leading the renewed effort he was blown off his feet and wounded by an enemy grenade. Despite his painful wounds he refused medical aid and persevered in the forefront of the attack on the enemy redoubt. He led the assault on several enemy gun emplacements and, single-handedly, destroyed 3 such positions. His outstanding personal leadership under intense enemy fire during the fierce battle which lasted for several hours, inspired his men to heroic efforts and was instrumental in the ultimate success of the operation. Capt. Foley's magnificent courage, selfless concern for his men and professional skill reflect the utmost credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.
Born in Freiburg im Bresigau.Joined navy on April 1,1914.Tranfered to aviation branch in 1915.At Windau,in addition to his flying duties,he was the unit's Brieftauben Offizier (carrier pigeon officer).On August 22,1917 he and his pilot,Oberflugmaat Gruber,sank the Russian destroyer "Stroini" in the Baltic.They were flying a Friedrichshafen FF.41A.In early 1918 he was in command of the Observer School in Wiek auf Rugen.In March he became Adjutant to Seefliegerabteilung 1.In June he took command of a training and testing unit.
In 1938 was in charge of the Technical Bureau of the Air Transport Ministry,whare his boss was Ernst Udet.He later rose to the post of Engineer General of the Air Force before retiring on April 30,1944.
Kermit A. Tyler (April 13, 1913 – January 23, 2010) was an American Air Force officer. Tyler was assigned as a pilot in the 78th Pursuit Squadron at Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, the day Japan attacked Pearl Harbor.
On 7 December 1941, Tyler was a first lieutenant in the Army Air Force serving as the Executive Officer of the 78th Pursuit Squadron, based at Pearl Harbor. That morning he was assigned duty as the Officer In Charge of the partly activated Pearl Harbor Intercept Center. His duties were to assist the controller in ordering planes to intercept enemy planes or supposed enemy planes, after the planes got in the air. New and untrained at the time, when warned of the approach of a large aircraft flight from the north, Tyler presumed it to be the scheduled arrival of six B-17 bombers from the mainland. The radar operators were tracking Japanese planes coming to attack the base. Radar operators, operating in training mode, failed to make clear the size of the formation even though it was larger than anything they'd ever seen, and he did not pass on an alarm of "attack imminent".
Following an investigation by a Naval Board of Inquiry in August 1942, it was determined that Tyler had been assigned to the Information Center with little or no training, no supervision, and no staff with which to work. Tyler was subsequently cleared on any wrongdoing by the Board and no disciplinary actions were taken against him.
Tyler retired as a lieutenant colonel in the United States Air Force in 1961. After leaving military service, he obtained a business degree and worked as real estate broker.
Tyler died of pneumonia on January 23, 2010, at his home in San Diego, California, at the age of 96. He was predeceased by his wife, Marian, and son, Michael; and survived by three children, Julie, Carol Daniels and Terry Tyler.
Ludwig Bauer (24 July 1912 – 26 October 1944) was a highly decorated Feldwebel in the Wehrmacht during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Ludwig Bauer was killed on 26 October 1944 near Rimini, Italy and was posthumously promoted to Feldwebel.
George T. Sakato
Born on February 19, 1921, in Colton, California, Sakato graduated from Redlands High School in nearby Redlands, California. His family was Japanese American, and they moved to Arizona during World War II to avoid internment.
Sakato joined the Army in March 1944 and by October 29, 1944, was serving as a private in the segregated Company E, 442nd Regimental Combat Team. On that day, near Biffontaine in north-eastern France, he charged an enemy position and took command of his squad after the squad leader had been killed.
For his actions during the battle, he received the Army's second-highest decoration, the Distinguished Service Cross. A 1990s review of service records for Asian Americans who received the Distinguished Service Cross during World War II led to Sakato's award being upgraded to the Medal of Honor. In a ceremony at the White House on June 21, 2000, he was presented with the Medal of Honor by President Bill Clinton. Twenty-one other Asian Americans also received the medal during the ceremony, all but seven of them posthumously.
Sakato currently lives in Denver, Colorado.
Medal of Honor citation
Sakato in 2009
Private Sakato's official Medal of Honor citation reads:
Private George T. Sakato distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in action on 29 October 1944, on hill 617 in the vicinity of Biffontaine, France. After his platoon had virtually destroyed two enemy defense lines, during which he personally killed five enemy soldiers and captured four, his unit was pinned down by heavy enemy fire. Disregarding the enemy fire, Private Sakato made a one-man rush that encouraged his platoon to charge and destroy the enemy strongpoint. While his platoon was reorganizing, he proved to be the inspiration of his squad in halting a counter-attack on the left flank during which his squad leader was killed. Taking charge of the squad, he continued his relentless tactics, using an enemy rifle and P-38 pistol to stop an organized enemy attack. During this entire action, he killed 12 and wounded two, personally captured four and assisted his platoon in taking 34 prisoners. By continuously ignoring enemy fire, and by his gallant courage and fighting spirit, he turned impending defeat into victory and helped his platoon complete its mission. Private Sakato's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the United States Army.