Rank and organization:   Lieutenant, U.S. Navy.
Birth:   5 August 1913, Baltimore,
Appointed from:   Maryland.
Citation:   For extraordinary and distinguished
gallantry above and beyond the call of duty as Officer-in-Charge of the
Engineering Repair Party of the U.S.S. Yorktown in action against enemy
Japanese forces in the Battle of the Coral Sea on 8 May 1942. During the
severe bombarding of the Yorktown by enemy Japanese forces, an aerial bomb
passed through and exploded directly beneath the compartment in which Lt.
Ricketts' battle station was located, killing, wounding or stunning all
of his men and mortally wounding him. Despite his ebbing strength, Lt.
Ricketts promptly opened the valve of a near-by fireplug, partially led
out the fire hose and directed a heavy stream of water into the fire before
dropping dead beside the hose. His courageous action, which undoubtedly
prevented the rapid spread of fire to serious proportions, and his unflinching
devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of 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)