Dood van Medal of Honor Winner Battle of the Bulge

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Dood van Medal of Honor Winner Battle of the Bulge

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Misschien al eerder geplaatst? (via US Army Bulletin board)

Medal of Honor Winner Jose M. Lopez Dies at 94
By Adam Bernstein Washington Post Staff Writer


Jose M. Lopez, 94, a retired Army master sergeant who received the Medal of Honor for engaging in a series of "seemingly suicidal missions" during the Battle of the Bulge, died May 16 at a daughter's home in San Antonio. He had cancer.

Sgt. Lopez was born in Mexico, orphaned when he was 8 and worked in a series of subsistence jobs. A short but sinewy man, he boxed lightweight for many years in his youth. After a series of seafaring misadventures - he once was stranded at sea for weeks on a cargo boat with nothing to eat but a cache of bananas - he enlisted in the Army during World War II.
He landed at Normandy a day after the June 6, 1944, invasion, and a bullet smacked into his ammunition belt, grazing his hip.

"I was really very, very afraid,'' he told journalist Bill Moyers for a television special in 1990. "I wanted to cry, and we saw other people laying wounded and screaming and everything, and there's nothing you could do. We could see them groaning in the water, and we had to just keep walking.''

At dawn on Dec. 17, 1944, he and his men were outside Krinkelt, Belgium, shortly after the start of the German offensive through the Ardennes known as the Battle of the Bulge.

Lugging a heavy machine gun, Sgt. Lopez climbed into a shallow, snow-covered hole that left everything above his waist exposed. He heard the rumbling of a tank, which he figured was American; an Allied soldier a few hundreds yards away had failed to signal him of approaching danger.

When he saw the German Tiger tank come into sight and the horde of German foot soldiers around it, he thought of dozens of his men just a few hundred yards away. Aiming at the soldiers around the tank, he killed 10 of them. That prompted the Tiger tank to fire rather recklessly in his direction. It took three shell blasts to knock Sgt. Lopez over, and he suffered a concussion.

He nevertheless repositioned himself to prevent enemy soldiers from outflanking him, resetting his gun and killing 25 more Germans.
Allowing time for his comrades to retreat to a safer position, he then dashed through the dense and protective forest and avoided contact with a cascade of enemy small-arms fire.

Eventually, the Americans fell back to Krinkelt and held out through the night. The Germans bypassed the town.

A few months later, Gen. James A. Van Fleet presented Sgt. Lopez with the Medal of Honor. The citation recognized the "seemingly suicidal missions in which he killed at least 100 of the enemy . . . [and which] were almost solely responsible for allowing Company K to avoid being enveloped, to withdraw successfully and to give other forces coming up in support time to build a line which repelled the enemy drive."

Jose Mendoza Lopez was born July 10, 1910. He never knew his exact birth town but was raised in Veracruz. His father was gone; his mother said he had drowned. She died of tuberculosis. With other relatives dead or unable to support him, he made his way to Texas and settled in the Rio Grande Valley town of Mission. There, a family let him sleep in their shed and fed him. His Medal of Honor citation lists Mission as his birthplace. He spent time hooking rides on freight trains, and at 17 found himself in Atlanta. Standing 5 feet 5 inches and weighing 130 pounds, he nevertheless fought and pummeled a much bigger man.

A boxing manager who witnessed the beating trained the newly named "Kid Mendoza" and saw him through 52 victories and three losses.
Sgt. Lopez once said the greatest moment of his boxing career was meeting Babe Ruth, who attended one bout in Atlanta and shook hands with the contenders before the first bell.

In 1936, he joined the U.S. Merchant Marine and held other maritime jobs.

After his World War II service, he fought in Korea until a ranking officer heard that a Medal of Honor recipient was in battle. He was ordered to the rear and spent months picking up bodies and registering them for burial.
He later was a recruiter, mowed lawns and plowed snow. He was placed in charge of a motor pool and oversaw large crews of maintenance personnel. He retired in 1973.

To maintain his physique, Sgt. Lopez jogged until age 88. He also saw a trainer three times a week, a regimen that ended three month ago as his illness worsened.

His wife of 62 years, Emilia Herrera Lopez, died in February 2004.
Survivors include five children, Candida "Marie" Pieratti of Mahopac, N.Y., Virginia Rogers of Ogden, Utah, Beatrice Pedraza of Lima, Peru, and John Lopez and Maggie Wickwire, both of San Antonio; 19 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.

(opm. de 12. SS Pz. Div. met wie hij in gevecht gewikkeld was, hadden geen Tiger tanks. De tanks welke door het bos kwamen waren Pz. Jäger IV 'Lang"van de PanzerJäger eenheid)
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Edgar
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Bericht door Edgar »

RIP :( .
Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience
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Michiel M.
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Bericht door Michiel M. »

Heb laatst ook een verhaal gelezen, zal wel kijken of ik het terug kan vinden, van iemand die ook de MOH had gekregen.

Hoe?

Tijdens een gevecht was hij zwaargewond, vooral zijn armen. Daarom had de medic van zijn unit hem met zijn armen tegen zijn lijf verbonden. (hij kon zijn armen dus niet bewegen).
Tijdens dat gevecht viel er een granaat in de kuil waar hij, samen met zijn maten aan het vechten waren, toen heeft hij zich op de granaat gegooid om de explosie te dempen, en heeft hij zo de levens van zijn maten gered....

Moet je ook wel erg dapper voor zijn...

RIP, allebei.

Michiel
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LHek
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Bericht door LHek »

101st Michiel schreef:Heb laatst ook een verhaal gelezen, zal wel kijken of ik het terug kan vinden, van iemand die ook de MOH had gekregen.

Hoe?

Tijdens een gevecht was hij zwaargewond, vooral zijn armen. Daarom had de medic van zijn unit hem met zijn armen tegen zijn lijf verbonden. (hij kon zijn armen dus niet bewegen).
Tijdens dat gevecht viel er een granaat in de kuil waar hij, samen met zijn maten aan het vechten waren, toen heeft hij zich op de granaat gegooid om de explosie te dempen, en heeft hij zo de levens van zijn maten gered....

Moet je ook wel erg dapper voor zijn...

RIP, allebei.

Michiel
Deze man was PFC Joe E. Mann, 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division. Hij sneuvelde in de Sonse bossen op 18 september, een dag na zijn landing tijdens operatie Market Garden.
http://www.wingsofliberation.nl/mg-jmann-nl.html
http://www.campbell.army.mil/MOHMann.htm
http://www.oorlogsmonumenten.nl/omn/zoe ... nav=detail
Afbeelding
Op zoek naar alles dat te maken heeft met de 101ste Airborne Divisie, 51st Highland Division en al het andere dat te maken heeft met operatie Market Garden en operatie Pheaseant
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