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SGT Herbert Joseph Thomas, Jr
Birth: Feb. 8, 1918
Columbus
Franklin County
Ohio, USA
Death: Nov. 7, 1943
Bougainville (North Solomons), Papua New Guinea

World War II Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. An Ohio native, he was raised in South Charleston, West Virginia, graduating from high school there in 1936. After attended Greenbrier Military School for a year, he went to the Virginia Polytechnic Institute on a football scholarship. Upon America's entry into WWII he joined the Army Air Corps and then transferred to the US Marines. He served as a Sergeant in the 3rd Marines, 3rd Marine Division. Thomas was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for action on November 7, 1943 at Koromokina River, Bougainville Island, Solomon Islands. He was killed in action. His citation reads in part, "Although several of his men were struck by enemy bullets as he led his squad through dense jungle undergrowtrh in the face of severe hostile machine-gun fire, Sgt. Thomas and his group fearlessly pressed forward into the center of the Japanese position and destroyed the crews of two machine guns by accurate rifle fire and grenades. Discovering a third gun more difficult to approach, he carefully placed his men closely around him in strategic positions from which they were to charge afer he had thrown a grenade into the emplacement. When the grenade struck vines and fell back into the midst of the group, Sgt. Thomas deliberately flung himself upon it to smother the explosion, valiantly sacrificing his life for his comrades. Inspired by his selfless action, his men unhesitatingly charged the enemy machine gun and, with fierce determination, killed the crew and several other nearby-defenders." In addition to the CMOH Thomas was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Presidential Unit Citation, and Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. A Gearing Class Navy Destroyer, DD-833, was named the USS Herbert J. Thomas. Initially buried in the US Military Cemetery on Bougainville, his remains were reinterred in Sunset Memorial Park Cemetery in South Charleston on June 19, 1948. (bio by: Don Morfe) 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  Herbert Joseph Thomas (1879 - 1965)
  Ida Smallwood Thomas (1881 - 1930)
 
 Siblings:
  Ida Thomas Hildreth (1903 - 1934)*
  Audrey Irene Thomas (1916 - 2003)*
  Herbert Joseph Thomas (1918 - 1943)
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Sunset Memorial Park
South Charleston
Kanawha County
West Virginia, USA
Plot: Section H, Lot 342
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Don Morfe
Record added: Feb 18, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7193941
SGT Herbert Joseph Thomas, Jr
Added by: Pennsylvania Lady
 
SGT Herbert Joseph Thomas, Jr
Added by: Airlock
 
SGT Herbert Joseph Thomas, Jr
Added by: Don Morfe
 
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Happy Birthday SGT Thomas. Semper Fidelis.
- Airlock
 Added: Feb. 8, 2017

- sjm
 Added: Feb. 8, 2017

- Lazer
 Added: Feb. 8, 2017
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