Congressional Medal of Honor
ANDERSON, JAMES, JR. *
Rank and organization: Private First Class. U.S. Marine Corps. 2nd Platoon, Company F, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marines, 3rd Marine Division
Place and Date and date: Republic of Vietnam, 28 February 1967
Entered service at: Los Angeles, California
Born 22 January 1947, Los Angeles, California
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Company F was advancing in dense jungle northwest of Cam Lo in an effort to extract a heavily besieged reconnaissance patrol. Pfc. Anderson's platoon was the lead element and had advanced only about 200 meters when they were brought under extremely intense enemy small-arms and automatic weapons fire The platoon reacted swiftly, getting on line as best they could in the thick terrain, and began returning fire. Pfc. Anderson found himself tightly bunched together with the other members of the platoon only 20 meters from the enemy positions. As the fire fight continued several of the men were wounded by the deadly enemy assault. Suddenly, an enemy grenade landed in the midst of the marines and rolled alongside Pfc. Anderson's head. Unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his personal safety, he reached out, grasped the grenade, pulled it to his chest and curled around it as it went off. Although several marines received shrapnel from the grenade,his body absorbed the major force of the explosion. In this singularly heroic act. Pfc. Anderson saved his comrades from serious injury and possible death. His personal heroism,extraordinary valor, and inspirational supreme self-sacrifice reflected great credit upon himself and the Marine Corps and upheld the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.