*FRYAR, ELMER E.
Rank and organization: Private, U .S.
Army, Company E, 511th Parachute Infantry, 11th Airborne Division. Place and date:
Leyte, Philippine Islands, 8 December 1944. Entered service at: Denver, Colo.
Birth: Denver, Colo. G.O. No.: 35, 9 May 1945.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty. Pvt. Fryar's battalion encountered the enemy strongly entrenched in a
position supported by mortars and automatic weapons. The battalion attacked, but in spite
of repeated efforts was unable to take the position. Pvt. Fryar's company was ordered to
cover the battalion's withdrawal to a more suitable point from which to attack, but the
enemy launched a strong counterattack which threatened to cut off the company. Seeing an
enemy platoon moving to outflank his company, he moved to higher ground and opened heavy
and accurate fire. He was hit, and wounded, but continuing his attack he drove the enemy
back with a loss of 27 killed. While withdrawing to overtake his squad, he found a
seriously wounded comrade, helped him to the rear, and soon overtook his platoon leader,
who was assisting another wounded. While these 4 were moving to rejoin their platoon, an
enemy sniper appeared and aimed his weapon at the platoon leader. Pvt. Fryar instantly
sprang forward, received the full burst of automatic fire in his own body and fell
mortally wounded. With his remaining strength he threw a hand grenade and killed the
sniper. Pvt. Fryar's indomitable fighting spirit and extraordinary gallantry above and
beyond the call of duty contributed outstandingly to the success of the battalion's
withdrawal and its subsequent attack and defeat of the enemy. His heroic action in
unhesitatingly giving his own life for his comrade in arms exemplifies the highest
tradition of the U.S. Armed Forces.