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 Francis Xavier McGraw

Francis Xavier McGraw

Birth
Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 20 Nov 1944 (aged 26)
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Burial Henri-Chapelle, Arrondissement de Verviers, Liège, Belgium
Plot Plot A Row 18 Grave 25
Memorial ID 11220880 · View Source
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World War II Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. Francis X. McGraw and his family moved to Camden New Jersey from Philadelphia when he was 2 years old. After completing school, he worked for the Campbell Soup company before enlisting in the Army in February 1942. He was sent overseas with his unit, taking part in combat operations in North Africa and Europe, including taking part in the D-Day invasion in France. In November 1944, Private McGraw was killed while engaged in battle with German Troops. His actions that day are described in the citation for the Medal of Honor that he was posthumously awarded for these events. The citation reads: "He manned a heavy machine gun placed in a foxhole near Schevenhutte, Germany, on 19 November 1944, when the enemy launched a fierce counterattack. Braving an intense hour-long preparatory barrage, he maintained his stand and poured deadly accurate fire into the advancing foot troops until they faltered and came to a halt. The hostile forces brought up a machine gun in an effort to dislodge him but were frustrated when he lifted his gun to an exposed but advantageous position atop a log, courageously stood up in his foxhole and knocked out the enemy weapon. A rocket blasted his gun from position, but he retrieved it and continued firing. He silenced a second machine gun and then made repeated trips over fire-swept terrain to replenish his ammunition supply. Wounded painfully in this dangerous task, he disregarded his injury and hurried back to his post, where his weapon was showered with mud when another rocket barely missed him. In the midst of the battle, with enemy troops taking advantage of his predicament to press forward, he calmly cleaned his gun, put it back into action and drove off the attackers. He continued to fire until his ammunition was expended, when, with a fierce desire to close with the enemy, he picked up a carbine, killed 1 enemy soldier, wounded another and engaged in a desperate firefight with a third until he was mortally wounded by a burst from a machine pistol. The extraordinary heroism and intrepidity displayed by Pvt. McGraw inspired his comrades to great efforts and was a major factor in repulsing the enemy attack."

Bio by: Anne Cady


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 22 Jun 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11220880
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Francis Xavier McGraw (29 Apr 1918–20 Nov 1944), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11220880, citing Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial, Henri-Chapelle, Arrondissement de Verviers, Liège, Belgium ; Maintained by Find A Grave .