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First Name: Gerald

Last Name: Endl

Birthplace: Fort Atkinson, WI, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Janesville, WI
Middle Name: Leon

Date of Birth: 20 August 1915

Date of Death: 11 July 1944

Rank: Staff Sergeant

Years Served: 1941-1944
Gerald Leon Endl

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Gerald Leon Endl
Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army
Medal of Honor Recipient
World War II

Staff Sergeant Gerald Leon Endl (20 August 1915 - 11 July 1944) was a U.S. Army soldier who was posthumously awarded the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions during World War II.

Gerald Leon Endl was born and raised in Fort Atkinson, WI. Endl later moved to Janesville, WI, where he was inducted into the U.S. Army in 1941. On 11 July 1944, he was serving in New Guinea as a Staff Sergeant in the 32nd Infantry Division. During a Japanese attack that day near Anamo, he single-handedly held off the advance until several wounded comrades could be rescued. He was killed while carrying the last wounded man to safety. For these heroic actions, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Staff Sergeant, U S. Army, 32nd Infantry Division.

Place and date: Near Anamo, New Guinea, 11 July 1944.

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty near Anamo, New Guinea, on 11 July 1944. S/Sgt. Endl was at the head of the leading platoon of his company advancing along a jungle trail when enemy troops were encountered and a fire fight developed. The enemy attacked in force under heavy rifle, machinegun, and grenade fire. His platoon leader wounded, S/Sgt. Endl immediately assumed command and deployed his platoon on a firing line at the fork in the trail toward which the enemy attack was directed. The dense jungle terrain greatly restricted vision and movement, and he endeavored to penetrate down the trail toward an open clearing of Kunai grass. As he advanced, he detected the enemy, supported by at least 6 light and 2 heavy machineguns, attempting an enveloping movement around both flanks. His commanding officer sent a second platoon to move up on the left flank of the position, but the enemy closed in rapidly, placing our force in imminent danger of being isolated and annihilated. Twelve members of his platoon were wounded, 7 being cut off by the enemy. Realizing that if his platoon were forced farther back, these 7 men would be hopelessly trapped and at the mercy of a vicious enemy, he resolved to advance at all cost, knowing it meant almost certain death, in an effort to rescue his comrades. In the face of extremely heavy fire he went forward alone and for a period of approximately 10 minutes engaged the enemy in a heroic close-range fight, holding them off while his men crawled forward under cover to evacuate the wounded and to withdraw. Courageously refusing to abandon 4 more wounded men who were Iying along the trail, 1 by 1 he brought them back to safety. As he was carrying the last man in his arms he was struck by a heavy burst of automatic fire and was killed. By his persistent and daring self-sacrifice and on behalf of his comrades, S/Sgt. Endl made possible the successful evacuation of all but 1 man, and enabled the 2 platoons to withdraw with their wounded and to reorganize with the rest of the company.

Death and Burial

Staff Sergeant Gerald Leon Endl was killed in action on 11 July 1944. He is buried at Saint Joseph's Catholic Cemetery in Waterloo, WI.

Honoree ID: 1378   Created by: MHOH




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