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First Name: Robert

Last Name: Scott

Birthplace: Washington, DC, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Santa Fe, NM
Middle Name: Sheldon

Date of Birth: 30 November 1913

Date of Death: 05 February 1999

Rank: Colonel

Years Served: 1941 - 1966
Robert Sheldon Scott

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Robert Sheldon Scott

Colonel, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipient

World War II

Colonel Robert Sheldon Scott (30 November 1913 - 5 February 1999) was a U.S. Army officer who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during World War II.

Robert Sheldon Scott was born on 30 November 1913 in Washington, DC, and graduated from the University of New Mexico in 1937 with a degree in English. In September 1941, Scott was drafted into the U.S. Army. After attending Officer's Candidate School he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant.

On 29 July 1943, he was a Second Lieutenant serving with the 172nd Infantry Regimental Combat Team of the 43rd Infantry Division that successfully captured the Munda Point airstrip on the island of New Georgia, Solomon Islands, from its Japanese defenders. On that day, Japanese soldiers counter-attacked against the American assault on Morrison-Johnson Hill overlooking the airfield. Scott commanded the 3rd platoon of "C" Company, which he led in an attack against the Japanese fortified position. About 75 yards from the enemy soldiers, Scott became detached from the rest of his men. He had also been shot in the left hand and received shrapnel wound to his head. Despite this, Scott used the combination of his carbine and grenades to kill 28 Japanese soldiers, causing the rest of the attacking soldiers to withdraw. Scott's colleagues consequently took the hill and later the airstrip. For his heroism, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Captain (then Lieutenant), U.S. Army, 172d Infantry, 43rd Infantry Division.

Place and date: Near Munda Air Strip, New Georgia, Solomon Islands, 29 July 1943.

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty near Munda Airstrip, New Georgia, Solomon Islands, on 29 July 1943. After 27 days of bitter fighting, the enemy held a hilltop salient which commanded the approach to Munda Airstrip. Our troops were exhausted from prolonged battle and heavy casualties, but Lt. Scott advanced with the leading platoon of his company to attack the enemy position, urging his men forward in the face of enemy rifle and enemy machinegun fire. He had pushed forward alone to a point midway across the barren hilltop within 75 yards of the enemy when the enemy launched a desperate counterattack, which f successful would have gained undisputed possession of the hill. Enemy riflemen charged out on the plateau, firing and throwing grenades as they moved to engage our troops. The company withdrew, but Lt. Scott, with only a blasted tree stump for cover, stood his ground against the wild enemy assault. By firing his carbine and throwing the grenades in his possession he momentarily stopped the enemy advance using the brief respite to obtain more grenades. Disregarding small-arms fire and exploding grenades aimed at him, suffering a bullet wound in the left hand and a painful shrapnel wound in the head after his carbine had been shot from his hand, he threw grenade after grenade with devastating accuracy until the beaten enemy withdrew. Our troops, inspired to renewed effort by Lt. Scott's intrepid stand and incomparable courage, swept across the plateau to capture the hill, and from this strategic position 4 days later captured Munda Airstrip.

He was awarded the Medal of Honor in October 1944 at Aitape, New Guinea.

Medals and Awards

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart


In 1997 his home state of New Mexico declared 30 November Robert Scott Day in his honor.

Death and Burial

Colonel Robert Sheldon Scott died at his home in Santa Fe, NM, on 5 February 1999 at, age 85. He is buried at Santa Fe National Cemetery in Santa Fe, NM. His grave can be found in Plot: 9-460.

Honoree ID: 1640   Created by: MHOH




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