Rank and organization:   First Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps.
.April 1914, Fort Scott, Kans.
Appointed from:   El Paso, Tex.
For valorous and gallant conduct above and beyond the call of duty as commanding
officer of a Scout Sniper Platoon attached to the Assault Regiment in action
against Japanese-held Tarawa in the Gilbert Island, 20 and 21 November
1943. The first to disembark from the jeep lighter, 1st Lt. Hawkins unhesitatingly
moved forward under heavy enemy fire at the end of the Betio Pier, neutralizing
emplacements in coverage of troops assaulting the main beach positions.
Fearlessly leading his men on to join the forces fighting desperately to
gain a beachhead, he repeatedly risked his life throughout the day and
night to direct and lead attacks on pillboxes and installations with grenades
and demolitions. At dawn on the following day, 1st Lt. Hawkins resumed
the dangerous mission of clearing the limited beachhead of Japanese resistance,
personally initiating an assault on a hostile position fortified by S enemy
machineguns, and, crawling forward in the face of withering fire, boldly
fired pointblank into the loopholes and completed the destruction with
grenades. Refusing to withdraw after being seriously wounded in the chest
during this skirmish, 1st Lt. Hawkins steadfastly carried the fight to
the enemy, destroying 3 more pillboxes before he was caught in a burst
of Japanese shellfire and mortally wounded. His relentless fighting spirit
in the face of formidable opposition and his exceptionally daring tactics
served as an inspiration to his comrades during the most crucial phase
of the battle and reflect the highest credit upon 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)