The President of the United States
in the name of The Congress
takes pleasure in presenting the
Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Private First Class,
U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. Born: 28 January 1926, Alameda, Calif. Accredited
to: California. Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty while serving as Acting Scout Sergeant with the 4th Battalion, 15th Marines,
6th Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Okinawa Shima in the
Ryukyu Chain, 15 April 1945. Undaunted by the powerfully organized opposition encountered
on Motobu Peninsula during the fierce assault waged by his battalion against the Japanese
stronghold at Mount Yaetake, Pfc. Gonsalves repeatedly braved the terrific enemy
bombardment to aid his forward observation team in directing well-placed artillery fire.
When his commanding officer determined to move into the front lines in order to register a
more effective bombardment in the enemy's defensive position, he unhesitatingly advanced
uphill with the officer and another Marine despite a slashing barrage of enemy mortar and
rifle fire. As they reached the front and a Japanese grenade fell close within the group,
instantly Pfc. Gonsalves dived on the deadly missile, absorbing the exploding charge in
his own body and thereby protecting the others from serious and perhaps fatal wounds.
Stouthearted and indomitable, Pfc. Gonsalves readily yielded his own chances of survival
that his fellow marines might carry on the relentless battle against a fanatic enemy and
his cool decision, prompt action and valiant spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of
certain death reflect the highest credit upon himself and upon the U.S. Naval Service.
Citation Courtesy of www.HomeOfHeroes.com
Of Honor Special Sections
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