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First Name: Charles

Last Name: DeGlopper

Birthplace: Grand Island, NY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Grand Island, NY
Middle Name: Neilans

Date of Birth: 30 November 1921

Date of Death: 09 June 1944

Rank: Private First Class

Years Served: 1942 - 1944
Charles Neilans DeGlopper

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Charles Neilans DeGlopper
Private First Class, U.S. Army
Medal of Honor Recipient
World War II

Private First Class Charles Neilans DeGlopper (30 November 1921 - 9 June 1944) was a U.S. Army soldier who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor, the U.S. military's highest award for valor, for his heroic actions and self-sacrifice during World War II.

Charles Neilans DeGlopper was born to Charles Leonard and Mary Neilans DeGlopper on 30 November 1921 in Grand Island, NY. In June 1941, Charles graduated from Tonawanda High School in Grand Island.

He entered the U.S. Army in November 1942 and trained at Camp Croft, SC. In April 1943 he was deployed overseas where he served in North Africa, Sicily, Italy and France.

On 9 June 1944 at La Fière, France, DeGlopper's heroic actions helped his unit obtain a highly important tactical victory in the Normandy Campaign. For his actions on 28 February 1945, he was recommended for the Medal of Honor by Captain Wayne W. Pierce, Commanding Officer of Company C, 325th Glider Infantry.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company C, 325th Glider Infantry, 82nd Airborne Division.

Place and date: Merderet River at la Fiere, France, 9 June 1944.

Citation: He was a member of Company C, 325th Glider Infantry, on 9 June 1944 advancing with the forward platoon to secure a bridgehead across the Merderet River at La Fiere, France. At dawn the platoon had penetrated an outer line of machineguns and riflemen, but in so doing had become cut off from the rest of the company. Vastly superior forces began a decimation of the stricken unit and put in motion a flanking maneuver which would have completely exposed the American platoon in a shallow roadside ditch where it had taken cover. Detecting this danger, Pfc. DeGlopper volunteered to support his comrades by fire from his automatic rifle while they attempted a withdrawal through a break in a hedgerow 40 yards to the rear. Scorning a concentration of enemy automatic weapons and rifle fire, he walked from the ditch onto the road in full view of the Germans, and sprayed the hostile positions with assault fire. He was wounded, but he continued firing. Struck again, he started to fall; and yet his grim determination and valiant fighting spirit could not be broken. Kneeling in the roadway, weakened by his grievous wounds, he leveled his heavy weapon against the enemy and fired burst after burst until killed outright. He was successful in drawing the enemy action away from his fellow soldiers, who continued the fight from a more advantageous position and established the first bridgehead over the Merderet. In the area where he made his intrepid stand his comrades later found the ground strewn with dead Germans and many machineguns and automatic weapons which he had knocked out of action. Pfc. DeGlopper's gallant sacrifice and unflinching heroism while facing insurmountable odds was, in great measure, responsible for a highly important tactical victory in the Normandy Campaign.

On 10 March 1946, Charles N. DeGlopper's Medal of Honor was presented to his father, Charles L. DeGlopper, by Major General Leland S. Hobbs at a ceremony at Trinity Evangelical United Brethren Church in Grand Island, NY.

Medals, Awards and Badges

Medal of Honor
Bronze Star Medal (Merit)
Purple Heart
Army Good Conduct Medal
American Campaign Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with Arrowhead Pin and 3 Bronze Stars
World War II Victory Medal
Croix de Guerre with Palm (France) 2 Awards
Presidential Unit Citation with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster
Combat Infantryman Badge
Glider Badge


● 3 December 1947: US Army Transport "Englin Victory" is renamed the "Pvt. Charles N. DeGlopper" at the Brooklyn Army Base at Brooklyn, NY.
● 5 April 1948: Road at Fort Bragg, NC, named for Charles N. DeGlopper.
● 7 July 1948: Charles N. DeGlopper's body is returned from France to the Buffalo Central Terminal, Buffalo, NY. The 6-mile journey from the Terminal to the Connecticut Street Armory was by caisson.
● 8-9 July 1948: Charles N. DeGlopper's body, along with two others, lies in state at the Connecticut Street Armory.
● 10 July 1948: Funeral from family home. Military rites conducted by Grand Island Post 1346, American Legion.
● 7 December 1958: U.S. Army Reserve Training Center, Colvin Blvd., Tonawanda, NY, is dedicated to Charles N. DeGlopper and named the Charles DeGlopper Center. It is a 600-person armory costing approximately $500,000.
● May 1962: American Legion Post 1346 appropriates and dedicates Charles DeGlopper Park, Baseline Road and Grand Island Boulevard, Grand Island, New York Garden Club, who continue today to maintain it. First services held for Memorial Day 1962.
● November 1965: Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial VFW Post #9249 named for Charles N. DeGlopper.
● October 1992: Grand Island Historical Society WWII Display for the Huth Road Elementary School Fourth Graders. This was the first public display of Charles N. DeGlopper's Medal of Honor.
● 9-11 June 1994: 50-year anniversary of Charles DeGlopper's death. Ceremonies at Maple Grove Cemetery and DeGlopper Park, Skydivers and a Presentation of Flags at Veterans Park, Display of Memorabilia, Vehicles and Artifacts at Historic Trinity Church, all on Grand Island Organized by the Niagara Frontier All Airborne Chapter, 82nd Airborne, Grand Island Historical Society, Town of Grand Island.
● 9 June 2002: On the island community of Grand Island, NY, the Charles DeGlopper VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) Post #9249 dedicated a new headstone on the grave of the island's native son, Charles N. DeGlopper. The new marker recognizes the fact that Charles DeGlopper was awarded the Medal of Honor after his death during the Normandy invasion.
● 12 June 2004: Ceremonies at Maple Grove Cemetery commemorating his life and sacrifice.
● 4 June 2010: Annual Ceremony at the Charles DeGlopper Memorial Panel at La Fiere, Normandy (France).

Death and Burial

Private First Class Charles Neilans DeGlopper was killed in action on 9 June 1944. He is buried at Maple Grove Cemetery in Grand Island, Erie County, NY, in Row 5 Left, Plot 4.

Honoree ID: 1365   Created by: MHOH




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