Rank and organization: Pharmacist's Mate First Class, U.S. Navy.
and date: Vierzy, France, and Somme-Py, France, 19 July and 5 October 1918.
Entered service at: Kansas City, Mo.
Born: 2 January 1896, Edgerton, Kans.
Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and
beyond the call of duty, with the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in action
at Vierzy, on 19 July 1918. Balch unhesitatingly and fearlessly exposed
himself to terrific machinegun and high-explosive fire to succor the wounded
as they fell in the attack, leaving his dressing station voluntarily and
keeping up the work all day and late into the night unceasingly for 16
hours. Also in the action at Somme-Py on 5 October 1918, he exhibited exceptional
bravery in establishing an advanced dressing station under heavy shellfire.
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)