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Distinguished Service Cross awards to Nebraska veterans of WW I



Following is a list of Nebraska servicemen, their address and date of action during World War I, who were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, second in importance to the Congressional Medal of Honor. * Awarded posthumously.

Banks*, Leonard, Farnum, July 22, 1918, In the Foret-de-Fere, France: Pvt, Co. G. 4th Infantry, 3rd Div; Badly wounded on patrol, he returned to his company to get assistance for wounded comrades. He then led first-aid men through heavy gas and shell bombardment to the wounded.

Benning, Fred, Norfolk, Oct. 9, 1918 South of Exerment, France: Cpl. Machine Gun Company, 16th Infantry, 1st Division. After his platoon commander was killed and two senior noncommissioned officers disabled, he took command of the platoon and by able leadership and courage, conducted it through heavy fire to its assigned position.

Benson, Andrew, Bertand, Nov. 1, 1918, Near Bantheville, France: Pvt. Medical detachment, 1st Gas Regiment: Severely wounded by shell fire, he continued to give first aid to the wounded and was struck the second time. He remained on duty giving directions for care of the other wounded.

Bly, Robert, Loup City, Oct. 15, 1918, Near Cote-de-Chatillon, France: 1st Lt. 108th Infantry, 42nd Division; Leading his own and another company around Hill 288 in the face of terrific machine-gun fire, he reached the enemy's line and captured a strongly fortified and entrenched position together with numerous machine guns, 92 prisoners and 1 minenwerfer, which he turned on the enemy and fired until all ammunition was gone. Later in the day, he and his men captured another hill.

Bongaradt, Charles, Omaha, July 1, 1918, at Vaux, France: 2nd Lt. 17th Field Artillery, 2nd Division: While serving as a telephone officer, he crossed an open field in full view of the enemy and under constant bombardment three times to repair telephone lines virally necessary to keep six batteries in operation.

Brinda, John, Valentine, Sept. 12, 1918, near Flirey, France: Sergeant, Company B, 355th Infantry, 89th Division: Without waiting orders he went forward against a concealed enemy machine gun which was holding up his platoon, killed the gunner and captured four men, thereby enabling his platoon to continue the advance. He also was awarded the Victory Medal and the French Groix de Guerre.

Buckendahl, Emil, Pierce, Oct. 5, 1918, near Gesnes, Fance: Pvt. Company F, 127th Infantry, 32nd Division: A litter bearer, on his own initiative, went out from a position of shelter to an exposed flank under intense machine-gun fire, and carried back to safety a wounded soldier who had been left in the field.

Budd, John, Minden, July 15, 1918, near Fossoy, France: Pvt. Medical detachment, 7th Infantry, 3rd Division. Working throughout the heavy enemy artillery fire, which preceded the German offensive, he aided the wounded and evacuated 12 comrades from an exposed position.

Cather*, Grosvenor P., Bladen, May 27, 1918, near Cantigny, France: 2nd. Lt. 26th Infantry 1st Division: During a strong enemy attack Lt. Cather mounted the parapet of his trench, and although exposed to withering machine-gun fire, he so skillfully directed the fire of his automatic rifles that the attack was repulsed. In this action he fell mortally wounded.

Curtis, Clyde O., Stella, July 18, 1918, south of Soissons, France: 1st Sgt. Company G, 16th Infantry, 1st Division: Leading his platoon against an enemy battery in the face of direct fire, he personally killed the gunner and, with the aid of his men, either killed or wounded the entire crew, thus preventing further casualties on his troops.

Daniel, Henry, Crete, July 16, 1918, near St. Eugene, France: Pvt. Battery A, 10th Field Artillery, 3rd Division: He repeatedly volunteered and carried important messages 4 kilometers through heavy shellfire near the enemy lines. On one trip he found a wounded soldier and carried him through an enemy barrage to the dressing station.

Dougherty, Raymond M., Lincoln, July 15, 1918, at Bos-d'Aigremont, France: Regimental Sgt. Major, Headquarter company, 30th Infantry, 3rd Division: He constantly exposed himself to shellfire while receiving messages from runners and in giving directions to them. He also frequently removed his gas mask to make himself more clearly understood, and encourage the runners by his example.

Dunbar, Charles T., Sidney, Aug. 5, 1918, west of Fismes, France: Cpl. Company F, 4th Engineers, 4th Division: A member of a small detachment of engineers which went out in advance of the front line of the Infantry through an enemy barrage from 77-millimeter and 1-pounder guns to construct a footbridge over the River Vesle. As soon as their operations were discovered, machine-gun fire was opened up on them, but undaunted, the party continued to work, removing the German wire entanglements and successfully completing a bridge which was of great value in subsequent operations.

Dye, Henry F., Walworth, Cpl. Company D, 126th Infantry, 32nd Division, near Juvigny France, Aug. 29, 1918: After an advance through heavy machine gun fire, from which his organization had suffered many casualties and he himself had been twice wounded, Dye had taken refuge in shell hole, when he heard the cried of a wounded comrade who was lying in an exposed position. Disregarding the intense machine gun fire, he crossed an open space, dressed the wounds of the comrade and carried him to shelter.

Green, Robert, Lincoln, Cpl. Company D, 339th Infantry, 85th Division, at Tulgas, Russia, Nov. 14, 1918 (detachment in North Russia) Nov. 14: While leading an attack against snipers concealed in houses, he crossed an open space of 200 yards in view of the enemy. He alone charged the building in which the snipers were located and captured 14 prisoners.

Gude, Charles J., Nebraska City, Pvt.1st Cl. Company D, 342nd Machine Gun Battalion, 89th Division, near Beauclaiara, France, Nov. 3, 1918: After being twice wounded and unconscious for nearly an hour, upon being revived Gude took command of his squad and later of his section after the squad and section leaders had been wounded, refusing first aid until he was relieved and ordered to the rear by his platoon commander.

Hausmann, William L., St. Helena, Pvt. Company A, 4th Infantry, 3rd Division, near Grand Ballois Farm, France, July 14-15, 1918: Under a heavy gas and shell bombardment he repeatedly volunteered and delivered messages over routes other than his own when the assigned runners had been killed or wounded.

Hoffman, Earl, Randolf, Pvt. Company C, 341st Machine Gun Gattalion, 89th Division, in the Bois-de-Bantheville, France, Oct. 24, 1918: Severely wounded while dressing the wounds of 23 in his platoon, he continued his work until he fainted from pain.

Holmes*, Oliver Wendell, Hastings, Pvt. Company G, 353rd Infantry, 89th Division, near Limey France, Sept. 12, 1918: Seeing his lieutenant fall severely wounded, Holmes, with another stretcher bearer, rushed through heavy machine-gun fire to his assistance. When they had placed the lieutenant on their stretcher and were endeavoring to go through the heavy fire to the dressing station, Holmes fell mortally wounded.

Ingold, Albert S., Imperial, Pvt. Company H, 103rd Infantry, 26th Division, near Bois-de-St. Remy, France, Sept. 12, 1918: Although suffering from wounds, Ingold continued to advance with is company, and when the advance was held up by enemy machine-gun fire, he made his way forward and with an automatic silenced the fire of two enemy guns. He continued on despite his condition until the objective was reached.

Janssen, Martin, Rushville, Sgt. Company A, 355th Infantry, 89th Division, near Flirey France, Sept 12, 1918: Coming up in the rear of two platoons of a battalion of the first line, Janssen noticed the two platoons were being held up by machine gun fire from the front and the flanks. Without a leader, the troops were confused and disorganized. Exposing himself to hostile fire, Janssen ran from one end of the line to the other, urging the men forward until both platoons moved ahead across a small gully and out of danger. His action prevented interruption of the advance of the entire first line.

Kline, David, Omaha, Pvt. 1sr Cl., medical detachment, 341st Machine Gun Battalion, 89th Division, near Remonville and Barricourt, France, Nov. 1-2, 1918: Attached to a company immediately behind the assault battalion of Infantry, he worked unceasingly giving first aid treatment to the wounded in his vicinity in an area constantly swept by intense fire from all arms. Displaying the highest devotion to duty and disregard for his own safety, he frequently worked in plain view of the enemy.

Lange, Carl, Hartington, Pvt. 1sr Cl, Company B, 2nd Machine Gun Battalion, 1st Division, near Fieville, France, Oct. 5, 1918: His first line held up by machine-gun fire from the woods, he and another soldier, voluntarily made their way through an enemy barrage, cleared out 3 machine guns, killed some of the crew and took 20 prisoners. Upon return and finding all of his officers as casualties, he assisted in organizing a small force and led it to the objective.

Le Masters, Charles A., Litchfield, Cpl. Company C, 314th Field Signal Battalion, 89th Division, near Beauclair, France, Nov. 4-11, 1918: From Nov. 4-11, while continually under heavy shellfire, Le Masters laid and maintained lines of communication within his area with utter disregard for his personal safety.

Mitchell, George R., Holdrege, Cpl. Company F, 16th Infantry, 1sr Division, near Soissons, France, July 22, 1918: Although wounded, he promptly took command of his company after all of his officers had been killed and courageously and successfully led it forward in the advance.

Naiman, Herman A., Gilead, Pvt, medical detachment, 28th Infantry, 1st Division, near Soissons, France, July 18-20, 1918: He displayed unusual courage and devotion to duty by remaining with the first wave of the attack during the three days of severe fighting and continuing under constant and heavy fire to give first aid to the wounded and assisting in the rescue of injured men.

Olson, John O., Valparaiso, Pvt. 1st Cl, Company L, 16th Infantry, 1st Division, near Bois-de-Fontaine, France, May 11, 1918: He displayed conspicuous bravery by going from the front line to an advanced post and rescuing, unaided, a wounded comrade in the face of heavy machine-gun fire.

Peterson, Roy W., Center, Pvt. 1st Cl, Company D, 114th Machine Gun Battalion, 30th Division, near Bellicourt, France, Sept. 29, 1918: Severely wounded while operating a machine gun under shell fire, he refused to leave his post until he was removed by his comrades against his protests.

Phillips,* Clifford F., Falls City, 1st Lt., 339th Infantry, 85th Division (detachment in north Russia near Boishieozerke) Apr. 2, 1919: With a few men and two Lewis guns he held the enemy counterattack for an hour until reinforcements arrived. He constantly encouraged and inspired his men by the example of heroism he set, refusing all aid when seriously wounded, to avoid weakening his small effective force.

Porter, Chauncey W., Chambers, Bugler, Company B, 355th Infantry, 89th Division, north of Flirey, France, Sept 12, 1918: He charged a machine gun alone armed only with an automatic pistol, killed one, took another prisoner and drove the remainder of the enemy platoon back along their trench, thereby enabling his platoon to advance.

Ralston, Orville A., Avoca, 1st Lt., 148th Aero Squadron, Air Service, over Bourlon Wood, Sept 26, 1918: Having engine trouble, he signaled his flight commander, left formation and started for the lines. Shortly his engine picked up and he rejoined his formation. He found three of them engaged with seven Fokker biplanes over Bourlon Wood. Seeing that one of our machines was hard pressed and in distress. Ralston instantly went to its assistance and drove one Fokker down into the clouds below. He followed and as they came out of the clouds at about 3,000 feet, opened fire again on the Fokker at 15-yards range. The enemy made one complete spiral and crashed. Four more Fokkers now attacked Ralston, but he managed to return safely to our lines.

Reed, Cecil E., Stratton, Pvt. 1st Cl, Company E, 353d Infantry, 89th Division, near Barricourt, France, Nov 2, 1918: When advance of his platoon was held up by severe machine gun fire, Reed left cover, advanced across open ground and opened fire on the enemy nest with rifle grenades. After twice returning to obtain more grenades, he succeeded with a well-directed shot in driving the enemy crew from the nest, whereupon they were killed by other members of his company.

Reed*, Glenn M., Grant, Sgt. Company B, 355th Infantry, 89th Division, near Beney France, Sept 18, 1918: he voluntarily left shelter and passed through a heavy barrage to assist a wounded comrade who was unable to reach shelter by himself. As a result of this heroic action, he was killed.

Rodgers, James F., Bassett, Pvt, Company I, 363rd Infantry, 91st Division, near Waereghem, Belgium, Oct. 31, 1918: When intense fire of enemy machine guns held up the advance of two companies and the enemy threatened to close in on our troops, he accompanied a squad of men forward to a point where he could most effectively use his automatic rifle. After the squad leader and two men had been killed, he remained at his post and forced the advance German posts to retire, making possible the continuance of the companies progress.

Sauers, Roy M., Stuart, Sgt 1st Cl, Company B, 314th Field Signal Battalion, 89th Division, nearly Tailly, France, Nov. 4, 1918: He as in charge of a wire-laying detail between Tailly and Beauclair. Over a road swept by heavy shellfire, he carried the line forward and in constant repair to the support of a battalion of the 355th Infantry.

Sieg, Robert E., Hooper, Pvt. 43rd Company, 5th Regiment, US Marine, 2nd Division, near Blanc Mont, France, Oct. 3-5, 1918: He unhesitatingly went through the heaviest machine gun and artillery fire dressing and carrying wounded. Disregarding his own safety he refused to take rest or food where there were any wounded needing attention.

Sittler, Edward, Merna, Pvt. Company C, 341st Machine Gun Battalion, 89th Division, Bois-de-Bantheville, France, Oct. 24, 1918: Although severely wounded in the leg by shellfire, he did not report for medical attention until he had given first aid and assisted in carrying other wounded soldiers to the first aid station a distance of six kilometers. After all his comrades received attention he had his own wounds dressed and was evacuated to the hospital.

Sladen, Fred W., Omaha, Brig. Gen. Headquarters 5th Infantry Brigade, 3rd Division. Oct. 14: Following 48 hours of duty without rest, he learned the front line was held under enemy fire and advanced through 3 kilometers of severe artillery fire. He found the commander killed and the troops disorganized. He personally reorganized under terrific machine-gun and shell fire to launch the advance anew until he fainted from exhaustion. Once revived he refused evacuation and due to his efforts, the advance was successful in the face of insurmountable difficulties.

Sorensen, Soren C., Grand Island, 1st Lt., 28th Infantry, 2nd Division, Cantigny, France, May 28, 1918: When officers of his unit were killed or wounded, and wounded himself early in the attack and suffered intensely, he took command, refused to leave his post, and by heroic courage and resolution in resisting counterattacks, contributed in great measure to the successful defense of his sector.

Tukey, Allan A., Omaha, 2nd Lt., 3rd Machine Gun Battalion, 1st Division, near Soissons, France, July 18-19, 1918: During engagement the leadership of his platoon was exceptionally distinctive by reason of his courage, initiative and presence of mind. While advancing on the second day of the attack he was wounded, but continued with his command until he had given complete instructions to his platoon sergeant and notified his company commander of the disposition of his guns, after which he was compelled to yield command because of weakness from his injuries.

Ver Merhren, Hubert, Omaha, Sgt. 1st Cl. Medical detachment, 7th Engineers, 5th Division, near Brandeville, France, Nov. 8-10, 1918: He showed utter disregard for his own personal danger in giving first aid to the wounded and carrying them to a place of safety under intense machine gun and shellfire.

Walsh, Frank, Benkelman, Pvt. 1st Cl., Company C, 4th Infantry, 3rd Division, near Mont St. Pere, France, July 22, 1918: After being severely wounded, he continued to operate his automatic rifle throughout the night. Westervelt, Edgar C., Lincoln, 2nd Lt., 26th Infantry, 1st Division, near St. Souplet, France, Oct. 18, 1918: Unaided he reconnoitered enemy machine gun positions. On the 19th, with a small party he crossed an area swept by fire and demolished several machine gun nests that were holding up the advance.

Wirth, Thomas F., Lincoln, Major, 355th Infantry, 89th Division, near Bois-de-Mort Mare, France, Sept. 12, 1918: In the confused windings of the trench system, Wirth, commanding the first battalion, saw his entire command held up by fire along its front. Walking out ahead of the troops, Wirth inspired his men to a united push that swept over the German emplacements and netted eight machine guns and 12 prisoners.

Wright, Dewey Edward, Ewing, Pvt. Company K, 16th Infantry, 1st Division, near Soissons, France, July 19, 1918: In the advance he and two comrades were cut off from the rest of the company by the enemy. He resisted stoutly until he fell with a rifle-shot wound through both legs and was taken prisoner. Two days later, during advance of our troops, he assisted in the capture of all of the enemy in a dugout by calling to the troops and disclosing his position.


Copied from book, "Decorations United States Army, 1862-1926 by War Department, Office of The Adjutant General, Washington, 1927" by Marianne Beel.

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