Almond E. Fisher

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Almond Edward Fisher
Born(1913-01-28)January 28, 1913
Hume, New York
DiedJanuary 7, 1982(1982-01-07) (aged 68)
Place of burial
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchUnited States Army
RankLieutenant Colonel
Unit157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division
Battles/warsWorld War II
AwardsMedal of Honor
Bronze Star Medal
Purple Heart
Combat Infantryman Badge

Almond Edward Fisher (January 28, 1913 – January 7, 1982) was a United States Army officer and a recipient of the United States military's highest decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions in World War II.

Biography[edit]

Fisher joined the Army in 1935 from Brooklyn, New York, and served five years as an enlisted man in Panama. He deployed to Europe in June, 1943, and fought in Italy and Southern France before the action which won him the Army's highest award for heroism and also the Purple Heart. On September 13, 1944, he was serving as a Second Lieutenant in Company E, 2nd Battalion, 157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division. In the early morning hours of that day, near Grammont, France, he led a platoon in an attack on German positions. Throughout the advance, he repeatedly went forward alone and silenced German machine gun emplacements. Just before daybreak, he ordered the platoon to dig in and hold their position. During the ensuing German counter-attack, he was wounded in both feet but refused medical aid and continued to crawl among his men, giving them encouragement and direction. For these actions, he was awarded the Medal of Honor seven months later, on April 23, 1945. General Joseph T. McNarney, Deputy Supreme Allied Commander in the Mediterranean Theater and commanding general of U.S. Army Forces, Mediterranean Theater, presented now First Lieutenant Fisher his Medal of Honor at a public ceremony outside Rome, Italy, in May 1945. In late July 1945, Fisher arrived at the Army's redistribution station in Asheville, North Carolina to be processed for discharge from active duty.[1] [2]

Fisher served an additional 19 years in the New York Army National Guard and attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before retiring.[3] He died at age 68 and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington County, Virginia.

Medal of Honor Citation[edit]

Fisher's official Medal of Honor citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty on the night of 12-September 13, 1944, near Grammont, France. In the darkness of early morning, 2d Lt. Fisher was leading a platoon of Company E, 157th Infantry, in single column to the attack of a strongly defended hill position. At 2:30 A.M., the forward elements were brought under enemy machinegun fire from a distance of not more than 20 yards. Working his way alone to within 20 feet of the gun emplacement, he opened fire with his carbine and killed the entire guncrew. A few minutes after the advance was resumed, heavy machinegun fire was encountered from the left flank. Again crawling forward alone under withering fire, he blasted the gun and crew from their positions with hand grenades. After a halt to replenish ammunition, the advance was again resumed and continued for 1 hour before being stopped by intense machinegun and rifle fire. Through the courageous and skillful leadership of 2d Lt. Fisher, the pocket of determined enemy resistance was rapidly obliterated. Spotting an emplaced machine pistol a short time later, with 1 of his men he moved forward and destroyed the position. As the advance continued the fire fight became more intense. When a bypassed German climbed from his foxhole and attempted to tear an M1 rifle from the hands of 1 of his men, 2d Lt. Fisher whirled and killed the enemy with a burst from his carbine. About 30 minutes later the platoon came under the heavy fire of machine-guns from across an open field. 2d Lt. Fisher, disregarding the terrific fire, moved across the field with no cover or concealment to within range, knocked the gun from the position and killed or wounded the crew. Still under heavy fire he returned to his platoon and continued the advance. Once again heavy fire was encountered from a machinegun directly in front. Calling for hand grenades, he found only 2 remaining in the entire platoon. Pulling the pins and carrying a grenade in each hand, he crawled toward the gun emplacement, moving across areas devoid of cover and under intense fire to within 15 yards when he threw the grenades, demolished the gun and killed the guncrew. With ammunition low and daybreak near, he ordered his men to dig in and hold the ground already won. Under constant fire from the front and from both flanks, he moved among them directing the preparations for the defense. Shortly after the ammunition supply was replenished, the Germans launched a last determined effort against the depleted group. Attacked by superior numbers from the front, right, and left flank, and even from the rear, the platoon, in bitter hand-to-hand engagements drove back the enemy at every point. Wounded in both feet by close-range machine pistol fire early in the battle, 2d Lt. Fisher refused medical attention. Unable to walk, he crawled from man to man encouraging them and checking each position. Only after the fighting had subsided did 2d Lt. Fisher crawl 300 yards to the aid station from which he was evacuated. His extraordinary heroism, magnificent valor, and aggressive determination in the face of pointblank enemy fire is an inspiration to his organization and reflects the finest traditions of the U.S. Armed Forces.[4]

Military Awards[edit]

Fisher's military decorations and awards include:

Combat Infantry Badge.svg
Bronze star
Arrowhead
Silver star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Badge Combat Infantryman Badge
1st row Medal of Honor Bronze Star Medal Purple Heart
2nd row Army Good Conduct Medal American Defense Service Medal w/ one bronze service star to denote entitlement to bronze clasp inscribed "Foreign Service" for duty in Panama. American Campaign Medal
3rd row European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal w/bronze arrowhead device and one silver and three bronze service stars for the Sicily (Ground), Naples-Foggia (Ground), Anzio, Rome-Arno, Southern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace and Central Europe campaigns. Credited with three assault landings: Scoglitti, 9-11 Jul 43 per WDGO 70-45; Salerno, 9-10 Sep 43 per DAGO 37-50 and Southern France, 15-16 Aug 44 per WDGO 70-45. World War II Victory Medal Army of Occupation Medal w/bronze clasp inscribed "Germany"
Unit Awards Presidential Unit Citation

WDGO 44-44 for the period 16-23 Feb 44 for 2nd Battalion, 157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division as per Department of the Army Pamphlet 672-1 dated July 6, 1961, page 189[5]

French Croix de guerre

DAGO 43-50 for the period 1-31 Jan 44, for 157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division as per Department of the Army Pamphlet 672-1 dated July 6, 1961, page 189[5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Army Center of Military History.
  1. ^ The Brooklyn Daily Eagle=May 31, 1945. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. 6. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  2. ^ The Brooklyn Daily Eagle=July 26, 1945. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. 12. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  3. ^ Press Release – Highway Dedicated to Almond E. Fisher, World War II Medal of Honor Recipient and Veterans Advocate=August, 9, 2012. The New York State Senate. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  4. ^ "Medal of Honor recipients – World War II (A–F)". Medal of Honor citations. United States Army Center of Military History. June 8, 2009. Archived from the original on 15 February 2008. Retrieved February 11, 2008.
  5. ^ a b "Department of the Army Pamphlet 672-1" (PDF).

External links[edit]