Rank and organization:   Second Lieutenant, U.S. marine Corps Reserve,
Company B, 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division.
Place and Date:
Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 7 march 1945.
Entered service at:   Chicago, Ill.
Birth:   8 June 1921, Chicago, Ill.
Citation:   For conspicuous gallantry and
intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as
commanding officer of Company B, 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine
Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima in the Volcano
Islands, 7 march 1945. Launching a surprise attack against the rock-imbedded
fortification of a dominating Japanese hill position, 2d Lt. Leims spurred
his company forward with indomitable determination and, skillfully directing
his assault platoons against the cave-emplaced enemy troops and heavily
fortified pillboxes, succeeded in capturing the objective in later afternoon.
When it became apparent that his assault platoons were cut off in this
newly won position, approximately 400 yards forward of adjacent units and
lacked all communication with the command post, he personally advanced
and laid telephone lines across the isolating expanse of open fire-swept
terrain. Ordered to withdraw his command after he had joined his forward
platoons, he immediately complied, adroitly effecting the withdrawal of
his troops without incident. Upon arriving at the rear, he was informed
that several casualties had been left at the abandoned ridge position beyond
the frontlines. Although suffering acutely from the strain and exhausting
of battle, he instantly went forward despite darkness and the slashing
fury of hostile machinegun fire, located and carried to safety 1 seriously
wounded marine and then, running the gauntlet of enemy fire for the third
time that night, again made his tortuous way into the bullet-riddled deathtrap
and rescued another of his wounded men. A dauntless leader, concerned at
all time for the welfare of his men, 2d Lt. Leims soundly maintained the
coordinated strength of his battle-wearied company under extremely difficult
conditions and, by his bold tactics, sustained aggressiveness, and heroic
disregard for all personal danger, contributed essentially to the success
of his division's operations against this vital Japanese base. His valiant
conduct in the face of fanatic opposition sustains and enhances the highest
traditions of 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)