Beauford T. Anderson
|Beauford Theodore Anderson|
July 6, 1922|
|Died||November 7, 1996
|Place of burial||Arlington National Cemetery|
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Service/branch||United States Army|
|Years of service||1942–1952|
|Unit||1st Battalion, 381st Infantry Regiment, 96th Infantry Division|
|Battles/wars||World War II
• Battle of Okinawa
|Awards||Medal of Honor
Enlisting in the United States Army in 1942, Anderson was sent to the South West Pacific theater in July 1944. He earned the Bronze Star while serving on the island of Leyte in the Philippines. By April 13, 1945, he was participating in the Battle of Okinawa as a technical sergeant in the 381st Infantry Regiment, 96th Infantry Division. During a Japanese counterattack at Kakazu Ridge on that day, he single-handedly held off a flanking force by alternately firing his carbine and throwing activated mortar shells. Although seriously wounded by shrapnel during the action, he refused medical evacuation until he had reported the situation to his commander. For these actions, Anderson was awarded the Medal of Honor the next year, on June 27, 1946.
Medal of Honor citation
He displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. When a powerfully conducted predawn Japanese counterattack struck his unit's flank, he ordered his men to take cover in an old tomb, and then, armed only with a carbine, faced the onslaught alone. After emptying 1 magazine at pointblank range into the screaming attackers, he seized an enemy mortar dud and threw it back among the charging enemy Japanese soldiers, killing several as it burst. Securing a box of mortar shells, he extracted the safety pins, banged the bases upon a rock to arm them and proceeded alternately to hurl shells and fire his piece among the fanatical foe, finally forcing them to withdraw. Despite the protests of his comrades, and bleeding profusely from a severe shrapnel wound, he made his way to his company commander to report the action. T/Sgt. Anderson's intrepid conduct in the face of overwhelming odds accounted for 25 enemy killed and several machineguns and knee mortars destroyed, thus single-handedly removing a serious threat to the company's flank.
After returning from the war, Anderson lived in Beloit, Wisconsin, and later spent time in Mackinac Island, Michigan. Ultimately, he relocated to Monterey County, California, where he served as mayor and city councilman of Seaside and as a Monterey County Supervisor. He lived on a cattle ranch near Hunter Liggett and spent the last years of his life in Salinas.
- This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Army Center of Military History.
- Kent, Alan E. (Winter, 1952-1953). "Wisconsin and the Medal of Honor". The Wisconsin Magazine of History 36 (2): 110. ISSN 0043-6534.
- "Beauford T. Anderson, Second Lieutenant, United States Army". Arlington National Cemetery Website. January 27, 2006. Retrieved 2009-08-11.
- "Medal of Honor recipients - World War II (A–F)". Medal of Honor citations. United States Army Center of Military History. August 3, 2009. Archived from the original on 8 August 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-11.