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Israel Little
Medal of Honor Presented Under aka: John Rush



Fading light dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky,
    Gleaming bright.
From afar drawing nigh,    
    Falls the night.

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, From the hills,
    From the sky.
All is well, safel
y rest,
    God is nigh.

Then good night, Peaceful night,
Till the light of the dawn
    Shineth bright,
God is near, do not fear,
  Friend, good night.

Arlington National Cemetery

BORN:  February 21, 1837 at Washington, DC

Entered Service in the US Navy from Washington, DC

Earned The Medal of Honor During the Civil War For heroism on March 14, 1863 at Port Hudson, LA

DIED:  April 29, 1916 at the age of 79

In an effort to strengthen the blockade of Confederate ports in the Gulf of Mexico, a squadron of Union vessels was dispatched towards Port Hudson, Louisiana. On March 14, 1863, the squadron attempted to head up river towards the enemy port, necessitating a passage beneath seven fortified works. The U.S.S. Richmond, second in line, was hit and damaged by enemy fire as it rounded a bend beneath the fortifications, and forced to withdraw. A 6-in rifle shot shattered the starboard safety-valve chamber and damaged the port safety valve, causing the steam room to fill with hot steam. Realizing the ship was in danger of exploding, Fireman Joseph Vantine ripped off his shirt and shredded it into four pieces. These were soaked in water and Vantine, along with Second Class Fireman John Hickman, First Class Fireman Mathew McClelland, and Fireman First Class John Rush, wrapped the wet cloth around their faces and bravely entered the dangerously hot steam room to haul out the fires, relieving each other when they were overcome by heat. The action of these four valiant men saved their ship, earned them the admiration of the crew, and netted for each man the Medal of Honor.



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