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First Name: Richard

Last Name: Bush

Birthplace: Glasgow, KY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Marines (present)

Home of Record: Bowling Green, KY
Middle Name: Earl

Date of Birth: 23 December 1924

Date of Death: 07 June 2004

Rank: Master Gunnery Sergeant

Years Served:
Richard Earl Bush

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Richard Earl Bush
Master Gunnery Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps
Medal of Honor Recipient
World War II

Master Gunnery Sergeant Richard Earl Bush (23 December 1924 - 7 June 2004) was a U.S. Marine who received the Medal of Honor as a Corporal for heroism on Okinawa in World War II.

Richard Earl Bush was born in Glasgow, KY, on 23 December 1924. Before his enlistment in the U.S. Marine Corps on 22 September 1942 in Bowling Green, KY, he worked for his father as a tractor driver and completed one year of high school. He received his basic training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, CA, and later was transferred to a replacement battalion at Camp Elliott, CA, for further training as an armorer. He later served with the highly decorated Marine Corps Raiders in the Pacific.

On 16 April 1945, Corporal Bush, as squad leader for 1st Battalion, 4th Marines, 6th Marine Division, led his men in a charge against an enemy stronghold during the final assault against Mount Yaetake in northern Okinawa. During that action, he ignored his own wounds until ordered to seek treatment. While in the makeshift medical camp, Cpl Bush threw himself on an enemy grenade that had been hurled among the medical staff and other wounded Marines. Bush survived his severe wounds, losing several fingers and the sight in one eye.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Corporal, U .S. Marine Corps Reserve, 1st Battalion, 4th Marines, 6th Marine Division.

Place and date: Mount Yaetake on Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands, 16 April 1945.

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a squad leader serving with the 1st Battalion, 4th Marines, 6th Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces, during the final assault against Mount Yaetake on Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands, 16 April 1945. Rallying his men forward with indomitable determination, Cpl. Bush boldly defied the slashing fury of concentrated Japanese artillery fire pouring down from the gun-studded mountain fortress to lead his squad up the face of the rocky precipice, sweep over the ridge, and drive the defending troops from their deeply entrenched position. With his unit, the first to break through to the inner defense of Mount Yaetake, he fought relentlessly in the forefront of the action until seriously wounded and evacuated with others under protecting rocks. Although prostrate under medical treatment when a Japanese hand grenade landed in the midst of the group, Cpl. Bush, alert and courageous in extremity as in battle, unhesitatingly pulled the deadly missile to himself and absorbed the shattering violence of the exploding charge in his body, thereby saving his fellow marines from severe injury or death despite the certain peril to his own life. By his valiant leadership and aggressive tactics in the face of savage opposition, Cpl. Bush contributed materially to the success of the sustained drive toward the conquest of this fiercely defended outpost of the Japanese Empire. His constant concern for the welfare of his men, his resolute spirit of self-sacrifice, and his unwavering devotion to duty throughout the bitter conflict enhance and sustain the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

On 4 October 1945, President Harry S. Truman, in a White House ceremony, presented Cpl Bush with the Medal of Honor.

In the years following the war, MGySgt Bush worked for the Veterans Administration as a counselor and earned numerous civilian awards for his efforts to aid other veterans despite constant problems with his one functioning eye, a holdover from his World War II wounds.

Medals and Awards

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart

Death and Burial

Master Gunnery Sergeant Bush died of a heart ailment at the age of 79 on 7 June 2004 in Waukegan, IL. He is buried at Ascension Catholic Cemetery in Libertyville, IL. His grave can be found in Section 7, Block 10, Lot 63.

Honoree ID: 1314   Created by: MHOH




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