Charles Murray, WWII Medal of Honor Recipient, Dies

Posted: August 17, 2011 in Uncategorized

A Medal of Honor recipient recognized for courageous actions during the Second World War has died, at the age of 89.

Charles Murray died due to congestive heart failure on Friday, at his home in Columbia, South Carolina.

Charles Murray was honored for single-handedly stopping an attack waged by 200 Germans against U.S. troops, during World War II. The citation accompanying his Medal of Honor shared that Murray was tasked to lead his men to take over a bridge and build a roadblock. Upon his descent into a valley, he discovered an American battalion pinned down by Germans, and determined that the only way to help the U.S. troops was to wage an attack from the flanks.

Murray decided, however, against committing his entire patrol. Murray fired at the Germans with grenades and an automatic rifle, while being bombarded by heavy fire. His one-man assault left 20 Germans dead, and many others wounded; he was able to disrupt the enemy enough that they eventually withdrew.

Murray was born in Baltimore, but grew up in Wilmington, North Carolina. He enlisted in the Army in September, 1942, while attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Aside from the Medal of Honor, Murray was also the recipient of three Silver Stars, two Bronze Stars, and the French Legion of Honor. He also served in the Korean and Vietnam Wars, before serving as commander for the Old Guard, which oversees protection for the Tomb of the Unknowns at the Arlington National Cemetery.

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