Medal of Honor Roll Call: Nicholas Oresko
Our tour of Medal of Honor recipients from each of the 50 states takes us this week to New Jersey. When Nicholas Oresko passed away Oct. 4, he had been the oldest living recipient of the Medal of Honor.
At the bottom of the page is an excellent video by the Medal of Honor Society with more background.
Make the most of your day!
Rank and organization: Master Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 302d Infantry, 94th Infantry Division Place and date: Near Tettington, Germany, 23 January 1945 Entered service at: Bayonne, N.J. G.O. No.: 95, 30 October 1945
Citation: M/Sgt. Oresko was a platoon leader with Company C, in an attack against strong enemy positions. Deadly automatic fire from the flanks pinned down his unit. Realizing that a machinegun in a nearby bunker must be eliminated, he swiftly worked ahead alone, braving bullets which struck about him, until close enough to throw a grenade into the German position. He rushed the bunker and, with pointblank rifle fire, killed all the hostile occupants who survived the grenade blast. Another machinegun opened up on him, knocking him down and seriously wounding him in the hip. Refusing to withdraw from the battle, he placed himself at the head of his platoon to continue the assault. As withering machinegun and rifle fire swept the area, he struck out alone in advance of his men to a second bunker. With a grenade, he crippled the dug-in machinegun defending this position and then wiped out the troops manning it with his rifle, completing his second self-imposed, 1-man attack. Although weak from loss of blood, he refused to be evacuated until assured the mission was successfully accomplished. Through quick thinking, indomitable courage, and unswerving devotion to the attack in the face of bitter resistance and while wounded, M /Sgt. Oresko killed 12 Germans, prevented a delay in the assault, and made it possible for Company C to obtain its objective with minimum casualties.
Video produced by the Medal of Honor Society about Nicholas Oresko: