Rank and organization:   Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.
Birth:   14 July 1923, Akron, Ohio.
Accredited to:   Ohio.
Citation:   For conspicuous
gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the
call of duty while serving with the 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, 2d Marine
Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on the Island of Saipan
in the Marianas, on 25 June 1944. With his machinegun emplacement bearing
the full brunt of a fanatic assault initiated by the Japanese under cover
of predawn darkness, Pfc. Epperson manned his weapon with determined aggressiveness,
fighting furiously in the defense of his battalion's position and maintaining
a steady stream of devastating fire against rapidly infiltrating hostile
troops to aid materially in annihilating several of the enemy and in breaking
the abortive attack. Suddenly a Japanese soldier, assumed to be dead, sprang
up and hurled a powerful hand grenade into the emplacement. Determined
to save his comrades, Pfc. Epperson unhesitatingly chose to sacrifice himself
and, diving upon the deadly missile, absorbed the shattering violence of
the exploding charge in his own body. Stouthearted and indomitable in the
face of certain death, Pfc. Epperson fearlessly yielded his own life that
his able comrades might carry on the relentless battle against a ruthless
enemy. His superb valor and unfaltering devotion to duty throughout reflect
the highest credit upon himself and upon the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly
gave his life for his country.
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)