Magazine article Army

Medal of Honor Citations

Magazine article Army

Medal of Honor Citations

Article excerpt

Throughout the three-year commemoration of the Korean War, ARMY Magazine will publish the citations for all soldiers in the U.S. Army who received the Medal of Honor for service during this war.

HERBERT K. PILILAAU

Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company C, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Pia-ri, Korea, 17 September 1951. Entered service at: Oahu, T.H. Born: 10 October 1928, Waianae, Oahu, T.H. G.O. No.: 58, 18 June 1952. Citation: PFC Pililaau, a member of Company C, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and outstanding courage above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy. The enemy sent wave after wave of fanatical troops against his platoon which held a key terrain feature on Heartbreak Ridge. Valiantly defending its position, the unit repulsed each attack until ammunition became practically exhausted and it was ordered to withdraw to a new position. Voluntarily remaining behind to cover the withdrawal, PFC Pililaau fired his automatic weapon into the ranks of the assailants, threw all his grenades and, with ammunition exhausted, closed with the foe in hand-to-hand combat, courageously fighting with his trench knife and bare fists until finally overcome and mortally wounded. When the position was subsequently retaken, more than 40 enemy dead were counted in the area he had so valiantly defended. His heroic devotion to duty, indomitable fighting spirit, and gallant self-sacrifice reflect the highest credit upon himself, the infantry, and the U. …

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