World War I Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. He received the award posthumously from United States President Barack Obama on June 2, 2015 for his action during combat operations near the Vesle River, Bazoches, France. Born into a Jewish family, he graduated from New York State Ranger School in 1914 and became a forester. Following the US entry into World War I, he enlisted in the US Army in October 1917 and sent to France, joining the American Expeditionary Forces and participated in the Aisne-Marne Offensive. While engaged in combat during the period of August 7 through 9, 1918, he left his trench under enemy fire to rescue wounded soldiers and was wounded in the process. He was hospitalized for three months and following his recovery, he was reassigned to light duty with the US Army Occupational Forces after the end of World War I and was discharged in August 1919 After returning to the US, he attended the New York State College of Forestry in Syracuse, New York, and eventually opened a greenhouse and landscaping business in New York City (Bronx), New York. He died at the age of 76. His Medal of Honor citation reads: "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty: Sergeant Shemin distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Rifleman with G Company, 2d Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment, 4th Division, American Expeditionary Forces, in connection with combat operations against an armed enemy on the Vesle River, near Bazoches, France from August 7 to August 9, 1918. Sergeant Shemin left cover and crossed open space, repeatedly exposing himself to heavy machine-gun and rifle fire, to rescue wounded. After Officers and Senior Noncommissioned Officers had become casualties, Sergeant Shemin took command of the platoon and displayed great initiative under fire until wounded on August 9. Sergeant Shemin's extraordinary heroism and selflessness, above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army." In addition to the Medal of Honor, he also received the Purple Heart and the Distinguished Service Cross.
Bio by: William Bjornstad