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Encyclopedia > Clyde A. Thomason
Clyde A. Thomason
May 23, 1914 - August 17, 1942
  
Sgt Clyde A. Thomason, posthumous Medal of Honor recipient
Place of birth Atlanta, Georgia
Place of death KIA on Makin Island
Allegiance USMC
Years of service 1934-39,1942
Rank Sergeant
Unit 2nd Raider Battalion
Battles/wars World War II:
* Makin Island Raid
Awards Medal of Honor
Purple Heart
Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
China Service Medal
American Defense Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal w/1 star
World War II Victory Medal

Sergeant Clyde A. Thomason (1914-1942) was a United States Marine who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism at the cost of his life while leading an assault on Makin Island on 17 August 1942. Thomason was the first enlisted Marine to be awarded the Medal of Honor during World War II. Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1451x1921, 2707 KB)Sgt Clyde Thomason, USMC; killed in action during the World War II Makin Island Raid; awarded teh Medal of Honor for leading the raid; photo from official Marine Corps biography at http://hqinet001. ... Image File history File links Moh_right. ... // KIA is a miltiary acronym for the classification Killed In Action. ... Butaritari Atoll is an atoll of 10 islands in the Pacific Ocean island nation of Kiribati. ... The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is a branch of the U.S. military responsible for providing power projection from the sea,[1] utilizing the mobility of the U.S. Navy to rapidly deliver combined-arms task forces to global crises. ... Marine Raider insignia The Marine Raiders were elite units established by the United States Marine Corps during World War II to conduct amphibious light infantry warfare, particularly in landing in rubber boats and operating behind the lines. ... Combatants Major Allied powers: United Kingdom France Soviet Union United States Republic of China and others Major Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Winston Churchill Charles de Gaulle Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Chiang Kai-Shek Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tojo Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian... The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States. ... A Purple Heart medal For the plant genus, see Purpleheart. ... The Good Conduct Medal is one of the oldest military decorations of the United States military. ... The China Service Medal was a military medal awarded to U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard personnel. ... The Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal is a service decoration of the Second World War which was awarded to any member of the United States military who served in the Pacific Theater from 1941 to 1945. ... WWII Victory Medal The World War II Victory Medal is a decoration of the United States military which was created by an act of Congress in July 1945. ... United States Marine Corps Emblem The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is the second smallest of the five branches of the United States armed forces, with 170,000 active and 40,000 reserve Marines as of 2002. ... Posthumous means after death. ... The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States. ... Butaritari Atoll is an atoll of 10 islands in the Pacific Ocean island nation of Kiribati. ... August 17 is the 229th day of the year (230th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... Year 1942 (MCMXLII) was a common year starting on Thursday (the link is to a full 1942 calendar). ...

Contents

Early years; first Marine Corps service

Clyde A. Thomason was born in Atlanta, Georgia on 23 May 1914, and after his graduation from high school there, traveled widely throughout the United States in a "jalopy" with companions. In December 1934, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in Savannah, Georgia. Although he was named for his father, at the time of his enlistment he dropped the "A" of his father's name and became known in the Marine Corps simply as Clyde Thomason. This was the name under which he enlisted in 1934 and was the name subsequently used in official Marine Corps records. He later served in the Marine Detachment of the USS Augusta, Flagship of the Asiatic Fleet, and was honorably discharged in 1939 upon the expiration of his enlistment. The day following his discharge, he was retained in the Fleet Marine Force Reserve. When he again became a civilian, he accepted a position with the Albany, Georgia, branch of the Fire Companies Adjustment Bureau, Inc., and Albany became his home in February 1940. May 23 is the 143rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (144th in leap years). ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is a branch of the U.S. military responsible for providing power projection from the sea,[1] utilizing the mobility of the U.S. Navy to rapidly deliver combined-arms task forces to global crises. ...


World War II

Thomason re-enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in January 1942 following the attack on Pearl Harbor. He asked for action, and when LtCol Evans F. Carlson was organizing his famous Raiders, he volunteered. Combatants United States Empire of Japan Commanders Husband Kimmel (USN), Walter Short (USA) Chuichi Nagumo (IJN), Mitsuo Fuchida (IJNAS) (1st aerial wave), Shigekazu Shimazaki (IJNAS) (2nd aerial wave) Strength 8 battleships, 8 cruisers, 29 destroyers, 9 submarines, ~50 other ships, ~390 planes 6 aircraft carriers, 2 battleships, 3 cruisers, 9... Brigadier General Evans Fordyce Carlson (26 February 1896 - 27 May 1947) was the famed U.S. Marine Corps leader of the World War II Carlsons Raiders. ... Marine Raider insignia The Marine Raiders were elite units established by the United States Marine Corps during World War II to conduct amphibious light infantry warfare, particularly in landing in rubber boats and operating behind the lines. ...


Because of his height — he was 6 feet 4 and weighed 190 pounds — he had to ask for a waiver on his height to get in the Raiders. He received his training in California before leaving for the Pacific battlefields in April for duty with the 2nd Raider Battalion.


Letters that he wrote to Albany friends during the time of his service in the Pacific show that he wanted to be "where things are happening." He refused to accept assignments which would keep him away from action.


He wrote of his commanding officer, LtCol Carlson, and of Maj Jimmy Roosevelt, second in command. LtCol Carlson thought so highly of Sgt Thomason that he selected him to lead the advance element against the enemy at Makin. It was there that Sgt Thomason's gallantry in action earned for him the Medal of Honor. Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945) and his son James Roosevelt (1907-1991) in 1934. ... Butaritari Atoll is an atoll of 10 islands in the Pacific Ocean island nation of Kiribati. ...


Sgt Thomason was one of 30 Marines who did not return from the Makin Island Raid. In November 1999, researcher discovered a mass grave on Makin Island that contained human remains, equipment, and dog tags belonging to Marine Raiders. Sgt. Thomason's remains were among those identified. His remains were returned to the United States and were interred at Arlington National Cemetery. A dog might wear several different identifying dog tags. ...


Posthumous honors

The Medal of Honor was conferred posthumously and was presented to his mother by Under Secretary of the Navy, James Forrestal, at ceremonies in January 1943 in Washington, D.C. James Vincent Forrestal (February 15, 1892 – May 22, 1949) was a Secretary of the Navy and the first United States Secretary of Defense. ...


Following his death, the people of Georgia bought a sufficient number of War Bonds to purchase for the Navy a cruiser, the USS Atlanta. The bonds were oversubscribed and there was money enough to pay the cost of two destroyer escorts, one of which, DE-203, was named the USS Thomason. which was launched at the Charleston, SC, Navy Yard in August 1943. Categories: Stub ... USN redirects here. ...


In 1957, in ceremonies at the Marine Corps Supply Center, Albany, Georgia, a new gymnasium building was formally dedicated in Sgt Thomason's name.


In May 1984 a Staff Non-Commissioned Officers Barracks was named for Sgt. Thomason at the Marine Corps Base, Camp Smedley D. Butler, Okinawa.


On December 17, 2004, the Sgt. Clyde Thomason Amphibious Skills Training Facility was dedicated on Coronado Island, California. December 17 is the 351st day of the year (352nd in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


On 17 August 2001, Sgt Thomason's remains were re-interred in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia. August 17 is the 229th day of the year (230th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... This article is about the year 2001. ... [[ Historical Information Arlington National Cemetery Section 27 Facts Pvt. ...


See also

United States Marine Corps Portal

Image File history File links USMC_logo. ... The following is a partial list of Medal of Honor recipients. ...

Medal of Honor citation

The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to The presidential seal was used by President Hayes in 1880 and last modified in 1959 by adding the 50th star for Hawaii. ...

SERGEANT CLYDE THOMASON
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS RESERVE

for service as set forth in the following CITATION:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while a member of the Second Marine Raider Battalion in action against the Japanese-held island of Makin on August 17- 18, 1942. Landing the advance element of the assault echelon, Sergeant Thomason disposed his men with keen judgment and discrimination and by his exemplary leadership and great personal valor, exhorted them to like fearless efforts. On one occasion, he dauntlessly walked up to a house which concealed an enemy Japanese sniper, forced in the door and shot the man before he could resist. Later in the action, while leading an assault on enemy position, he gallantly gave up his life in the service of his country. His courage and loyal devotion to duty in the face of grave peril were in keeping with the finest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

References

This article incorporates text in the public domain from the United States Marine Corps.
  • Sergeant Clyde A. Thomason, USMC, Who's Who in Marine Corps History, History Division, United States Marine Corps.
  • Sgt Clyde Thomason, Medal of Honor, 1942, 2d Raider Bn, Makin, Medal of Honor citation.

The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ... The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is a branch of the U.S. military responsible for providing power projection from the sea,[1] utilizing the mobility of the U.S. Navy to rapidly deliver combined-arms task forces to global crises. ...

External links

  • Clyde Thomason, Sergeant, United States Marine Corps, Arlington National Cemetery profile.
  • Find-A-Grave biography

 
 

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