Rank and organization:   Captain, U.S. Marine Corps.
Birth:   27 September
1905, Rebecca, Ga.
Entered service at:   Ashburn, Ga.
Citation:   For conspicuous
gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty while attached to Marine Fighting Squadron 211, during action
against enemy Japanese land, surface and aerial units at Wake Island, 8
to 23 December 1941. Engaging vastly superior forces of enemy bombers and
warships on 9 and 12 December, Capt. Elrod shot down 2 of a flight of 22
hostile planes and, executing repeated bombing and strafing runs at extremely
low altitude and close range, succeeded in inflicting deadly damage upon
a large Japanese vessel, thereby sinking the first major warship to be
destroyed by small caliber bombs delivered from a fighter-type aircraft.
When his plane was disabled by hostile fire and no other ships were operative,
Capt. Elrod assumed command of 1 flank of the line set up in defiance of
the enemy landing and, conducting a brilliant defense, enabled his men
to hold their positions and repulse intense hostile fusillades to provide
covering fire for unarmed ammunition carriers. Capturing an automatic weapon
during 1 enemy rush in force, he gave his own firearm to 1 of his men and
fought on vigorously against the Japanese. Responsible in a large measure
for the strength of his sector's gallant resistance, on 23 December, Capt.
Elrod led his men with bold aggressiveness until he fell, mortally wounded.
His superb skill as a pilot, daring leadership and unswerving devotion
to duty distinguished him among the defenders of Wake Island, and his valiant
conduct reflects the highest credit upon himself and the U.S. Naval Service.
He gallantly gave his life for his country.
This data was extracted from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, U.S. Senate, Medal of Honor Recipients: 1863-1973 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1973)