Rank and organization:   Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.
Birth:   28 January 1926, Alameda, Calif.
Accredited to:   California.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above
and beyond the call of duty while serving as Acting Scout Sergeant with
the 4th Battalion, 15th Marines, 6th Marine Division, during action against
enemy Japanese forces on Okinawa Shima in the Ryukyu Chain, 15 April 1945.
Undaunted by the powerfully organized opposition encountered on Motobu
Peninsula during the fierce assault waged by his battalion against the
Japanese stronghold at Mount Yaetake, Pfc. Gonsalves repeatedly braved
the terrific enemy bombardment to aid his forward observation team in directing
well-placed artillery fire. When his commanding officer determined to move
into the front lines in order to register a more effective bombardment
in the enemy's defensive position, he unhesitatingly advanced uphill with
the officer and another Marine despite a slashing barrage of enemy mortar
and rifle fire. As they reached the front and a Japanese grenade fell close
within the group, instantly Pfc. Gonsalves dived on the deadly missile,
absorbing the exploding charge in his own body and thereby protecting the
others from serious and perhaps fatal wounds. Stouthearted and indomitable,
Pfc. Gonsalves readily yielded his own chances of survival that his fellow
marines might carry on the relentless battle against a fanatic enemy and
his cool decision, prompt action and valiant spirit of self-sacrifice in
the face of certain death reflect the highest credit upon himself and upon
the U.S. Naval Service.
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)