The President of the United States
in the name of The Congress
takes pleasure in presenting the
Medal of Honor
SKAGGS, LUTHER, JR.
Rank and Organization: Private First Class, U.S.
Marine Corps Reserve, 3d Battalion, 3d Marines, 3d Marine Division. Place and Date
Asan-Adelup beachhead, Guam, Marianas Islands, 21 -22 July 1944. Entered Service at:
Kentucky. Born: 3 March 1923, Henderson, Ky.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty while serving as squad leader with a mortar section of a rifle company in the
3d Battalion, 3d Marines, 3d Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces
on the Asan-Adelup beachhead, Guam, Marianas Islands, 21 -22 July 1944. When the section
leader became a casualty under a heavy mortar barrage shortly after landing, Pfc. Skaggs
promptly assumed command and led the section through intense fire for a distance of 200
yards to a position from which to deliver effective coverage of the assault on a strategic
cliff. Valiantly defending this vital position against strong enemy counterattacks during
the night, Pfc. Skaggs was critically wounded when a Japanese grenade lodged in his
foxhole and exploded, shattering the lower part of one leg. Quick to act, he applied an
improvised tourniquet and, while propped up in his foxhole, gallantly returned the enemy's
fire with his rifle and handgrenades for a period of 8 hours, later crawling unassisted to
the rear to continue the fight until the Japanese had been annihilated. Uncomplaining and
calm throughout this critical period, Pfc. Skaggs served as a heroic example of courage
and fortitude to other wounded men and, by his courageous leadership and inspiring
devotion to duty, upheld the high traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.