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CDR Arthur Murray Preston

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CDR Arthur Murray Preston

World War II Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. Served during World War II in the United States Navy as a Lieutenant and commander of Torpedo Boat Squadron 33. He was awarded the CMOH for his bravery at Wasile Bay, Halmahera Island, on September 16, 1944. His citation reads “For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while effecting the rescue of a Navy pilot shot down in Wasile Bay, Halmahera Island, less than 200 yards from a strongly defended Japanese dock and supply area. Volunteering for a perilous mission unsuccessfully attempted by the pilot's squadron mates and a PBY plane, Lt. Comdr. (then Lieutenant) Preston led PT-489 and PT-363 through 60 miles of restricted, heavily mined waters. Twice turned back while running the gauntlet of fire from powerful coastal defense guns guarding the 11-mile strait at the entrance to the bay, he was again turned back by furious fire in the immediate area of the downed airman. Aided by an aircraft smokescreen, he finally succeeded in reaching his objective and, under vicious fire delivered at 150-yard range, took the pilot aboard and cleared the area, sinking a small hostile cargo vessel with 40-mm. fire during retirement. Increasingly vulnerable when covering aircraft were forced to leave because of insufficient fuel, Lt. Comdr. Preston raced PT boats 489 and 363 at high speed for 20 minutes through shell-splashed water and across minefields to safety. Under continuous fire for 2l/2 hours, Lt. Comdr. Preston successfully achieved a mission considered suicidal in its tremendous hazards, and brought his boats through without personnel casualties and with but superficial damage from shrapnel. His exceptional daring and great personal valor enhance the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service".

Bio by: Russ

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 25 Sep 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 5800786
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for CDR Arthur Murray Preston (1 Nov 1913–7 Jan 1968), Find A Grave Memorial no. 5800786, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .