Rank and organization:   Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company K, 18th Infantry,
1st Infantry Division.
Place and date:   Near Haaren, Germany, 18 October
Entered service at:   Prescott, Ariz.
Birth:   Bethel, N.C.
47, 18 June 1945.
Citation:   On 18 October 1944, Company K, 18th Infantry,
occupying a position on a hill near Haaren, Germany, was attacked by an
enemy infantry battalion supported by tanks. The assault was preceded by
an artillery concentration, lasting an hour, which inflicted heavy casualties
on the company. While engaged in moving wounded men to cover, Sgt. Thompson
observed that the enemy had overrun the positions of the 3d Platoon. He
immediately attempted to stem the enemy's advance single-handedly. He manned
an abandoned machinegun and fired on the enemy until a direct hit from
a hostile tank destroyed the gun. Shaken and dazed, Sgt. Thompson picked
up an automatic rifle and although alone against the enemy force which
was pouring into the gap in our lines, he ??fired burst after burst, halting
the leading elements of the attack and dispersing those following. Throwing
aside his automatic rifle, which had jammed, he took up a rocket gun, fired
on a light tank, setting it on fire. By evening the enemy had been driven
from the greater part of the captured position but still held 3 pillboxes.
Sgt. Thompson's squad was assigned the task of dislodging the enemy from
these emplacements. Darkness having fallen and finding that fire of his
squad was ineffective from a distance, Sgt. Thompson crawled forward alone
to within 20 yards of 1 of the pillboxes and fired grenades into it. The
Germans holding the emplacement concentrated their fire upon him. Though
wounded, he held his position fearlessly, continued his grenade fire, and
finally forced the enemy to abandon the blockhouse. Sgt. Thompson's courageous
leadership inspired his men and materially contributed to the clearing
of the enemy from his last remaining hold on this important hill position.
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)