Rank and organization:   Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company I, 18th Infantry,
1st Infantry Division.
Place and date:   Near Stolberg, Germany, 24 September
Entered service at:   Long Island, N.Y.
Birth:   New York, N.Y.
No.: 71, 22 August 1945.
Citation:   He was in charge of a squad of the 2d
Platoon in the vicinity of Stolberg, Germany, early in the morning of 24
September 1944, when 2 enemy companies supported by machineguns launched
an attack to seize control of an important crossroads which was defended
by his platoon. One American squad was forced back, another captured, leaving
only S/Sgt. Schaefer's men to defend the position. To shift his squad into
a house which would afford better protection, he crawled about under heavy
small-arms and machinegun fire, instructed each individual, and moved to
the building. A heavy concentration of enemy artillery fire scored hits
on his strong point. S/Sgt. Schaefer assigned his men to positions and
selected for himself the most dangerous one at the door. With his Ml rifle,
he broke the first wave of infantry thrown toward the house. The Germans
attacked again with grenades and flame throwers but were thrown back a
second time, S/Sgt. Schaefer killing and wounding several. Regrouped for
a final assault, the Germans approached from 2 directions. One force drove
at the house from the front, while a second group advanced stealthily along
a hedgerow. Recognizing the threat, S/Sgt. Schaefer fired rapidly at the
enemy before him, killing or wounding all 6; then, with no cover whatever,
dashed to the hedgerow and poured deadly accurate shots into the second
group, killing 5, wounding 2 others, and forcing the enemy to withdraw.
He scoured the area near his battered stronghold and captured 10 prisoners.
By this time the rest of his company had begun a counterattack; he moved
forward to assist another platoon to regain its position. Remaining in
the lead, crawling and running in the face of heavy fire, he overtook the
enemy, and liberated the American squad captured earlier in the battle.
In all, single-handed and armed only with his rifle, he killed between
15 and 20 Germans, wounded at least as many more, and took 10 prisoners.
S/Sgt. Schaefer's indomitable courage and his determination to hold his
position at all costs were responsible for stopping an enemy break-through.
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)