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LATHAM, JOHN

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Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Latham, Sgt. Alan L. Eggers, and Cpl. Thomas E. O'shea took cover in a shellhole well within the enemy lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank which had became disabled 30 yards from them, the three soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machine guns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area, Cpl. O'Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted two wounded soldiers to cover in the sap of a trench nearby. Sgts. Latham and Eggers then returned to the tank in the face of violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back where the wounded men were, keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun, and later bringing it with the wounded men back to our lines under cover of darkness.

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Service

Rank

Division

U.S. Army Sergeant [highest rank: Warrant Officer (j.g.) 3d Platoon, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division

Conflict

Year of honor

born

World War One 1918 Windemere, Cumbria County, England

Citation

Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Latham, Sgt. Alan L. Eggers, and Cpl. Thomas E. O'shea took cover in a shellhole well within the enemy lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank which had became disabled 30 yards from them, the three soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machine guns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area, Cpl. O'Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted two wounded soldiers to cover in the sap of a trench nearby. Sgts. Latham and Eggers then returned to the tank in the face of violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back where the wounded men were, keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun, and later bringing it with the wounded men back to our lines under cover of darkness.