Rank and organization:   Private First Class, U.S. Army, Medical Detachment,
145th Infantry, 37th Infantry Division.
Place and date:   At Horseshoe Hill,
New Georgia, Solomon Islands, 27 July 1943.
Entered service at:   Cleveland,
Birth:   Cleveland, Ohio.
G.O. No.: 86, 23 December 1943.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the
call of duty. Pfc. Petrarca advanced with the leading troop element to
within 100 yards of the enemy fortifications where mortar and small-arms
fire caused a number of casualties. Singling out the most seriously wounded,
he worked his way to the aid of Pfc. Scott, Iying within 75 yards of the
enemy, whose wounds were so serious that he could not even be moved out
of the direct line of fire Pfc Petrarca fearlessly administered first aid
to Pfc. Scott and 2 other soldiers and shielded the former until his death.
On 29 July 1943, Pfc. Petrarca. during an intense mortar barrage, went
to the aid of his sergeant who had been partly buried in a foxhole under
the debris of a shell explosion, dug him out, restored him to consciousness
and caused his evacuation. On 31 July 1943 and against the warning of a
fellow soldier, he went to the aid of a mortar fragment casualty where
his path over the crest of a hill exposed him to enemy observation from
only 20 yards distance. A target for intense knee mortar and automatic
fire, he resolutely worked his way to within 2 yards of his objective where
he was mortally wounded by hostile mortar fire. Even on the threshold of
death he continued to display valor and contempt for the foe, raising himself
to his knees, this intrepid soldier shouted defiance at the enemy, made
a last attempt to reach his wounded comrade and fell in glorious death.
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)