Rank and organization:   Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company F, 143d Infantry,
36th Infantry Division.
Place and date:   Near San Angelo, Italy, 22 January
Entered service at:   Veedersburg, Ind.
Birth:   Burton, Kans.
31, 17 April 1945.
Citation:   For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity
at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty. On 22 January 1944,
Company F had the mission of crossing the Rapido River in the vicinity
of San Angelo, Italy, and attacking the well-prepared German positions
to the west. For the defense of these positions the enemy had prepared
a network of machinegun positions covering the terrain to the front with
a pattern of withering machinegun fire, and mortar and artillery positions
zeroed in on the defilade areas. S/Sgt. McCall commanded a machinegun section
that was to provide added fire support for the riflemen. Under cover of
darkness, Company F advanced to the river crossing site and under intense
enemy mortar, artillery, and machinegun fire crossed an ice-covered bridge
which was continually the target for enemy fire. Many casualties occurred
on reaching the west side of the river and reorganization was imperative.
Exposing himself to the deadly enemy machinegun and small arms fire that
swept over the flat terrain, S/Sgt. McCall, with unusual calmness, encouraged
and welded his men into an effective fighting unit. He then led them forward
across the muddy, exposed terrain. Skillfully he guided his men through
a barbed-wire entanglement to reach a road where he personally placed the
weapons of his two squads into positions of vantage, covering the battalion's
front. A shell landed near one of the positions, wounding the gunner, killing
the assistant gunner, and destroying the weapon. Even though enemy shells
were falling dangerously near, S/Sgt. McCall crawled across the treacherous
terrain and rendered first aid to the wounded man, dragging him into a
position of cover with the help of another man. The gunners of the second
machinegun had been wounded from the fragments of an enemy shell, leaving
S/Sgt. McCall the only remaining member of his machinegun section. Displaying
outstanding aggressiveness, he ran forward with the weapon on his hip,
reaching a point 30 yards from the enemy, where he fired 2 bursts of fire
into the nest, killing or wounding all of the crew and putting the gun
out of action. A second machinegun now opened fire upon him and he rushed
its position, firing his weapon from the hip, killing 4 of the guncrew.
A third machinegun, 50 yards in rear of the first two, was delivering a
tremendous volume of fire upon our troops. S/Sgt. McCall spotted its position
and valiantly went toward it in the face of overwhelming enemy fire. He
was last seen courageously moving forward on the enemy position, firing
his machinegun from his hip. S/Sgt. McCall's intrepidity and unhesitating
willingness to sacrifice his life exemplify the highest traditions of the
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)