b. 14/07/1926 Rich Hill, Missouri. d. 14/03/1945 Iwo Jima, Japan.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 14/03/1945 Iwo Jima, Japan.
George Phillips was born in Bates County, Missouri on July 14, 1926, and worked on the railroad before enlisting in the United States Marine Corps on April 25, 1944.
During the Battle of Iwo Jima, the night of March 14, 1945, Private Phillips was standing guard as the other Marines in his unit were resting. A Japanese soldier tossed a hand-grenade toward the group. Realizing the gravity of the situation, Phillips sacrificed his life by smothering the hand grenade to save the lives of his fellow Marines. For this action, he was awarded his nation's highest military decoration — the Medal of Honor. The decoration was received by his uncle, with whom Pvt Phillips had formerly resided.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with Second Battalion, Twenty-eight Marines, Fifth Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces during the seizure of Iwo Jima in the Volcano Islands, on 14 March 1945. Standing the fox-hole watch while other members of his squad rested after a night of bitter hand grenade fighting against infiltrating Japanese troops, Private Phillips was the only member of his unit alerted when an enemy hand grenade was tossed into their midst. Instantly shouting a warning, he unhesitatingly threw himself on the deadly missile, absorbing the shattering violence of the exploding charge in his own body and protecting his comrades from serious injury. Stouthearted and indomitable, Private Phillips willingly yielded his own life that his fellow Marines might carry on the relentless battle against a fanatic enemy and his superb valor and unfaltering spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of certain death reflect the highest credit upon himself and upon the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
BURIAL LOCATION: BETHEL CEMETERRY, LABADIE, MISSOURI.
156, Lot 1, Lot behind flagpole
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