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First Name: James

Last Name: Slaton

Birthplace: Laurel, MS, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Gulfport, MS
Middle Name: Daniel

Date of Birth: 02 April 1912

Date of Death: 25 February 1961

Rank: Corporal

Years Served:
James Daniel Slaton

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


James Daniel Slaton

Corporal, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipients

World War II

Corporal James D. Slaton (2 April 1910 or 1912* - 25 February 1961) was a U.S. Army soldier and recipient of the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during World War II.

* Sources are inconsistent on Slaton's year of birth. His Medal of Honor citation shows 2 April 1912 while his government-issued headstone shows 2 April 1910.

James D. Slaton joined the Army from Gulfport, MS. On 23 September 1943, he was serving as a Corporal in the 157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division. Near Oliveto, Italy, that day, he single-handedly destroyed three enemy machine gun nests. For his actions, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, 157th Infantry, 45th Infantry Division.

Place and date: Near Oliveto, Italy, 23 September 1943.

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy in the vicinity of Oliveto, Italy, on 23 September 1943. Cpl. Slaton was lead scout of an infantry squad which had been committed to a flank to knock out enemy resistance which had succeeded in pinning 2 attacking platoons to the ground. Working ahead of his squad, Cpl. Slaton crept upon an enemy machinegun nest and, assaulting it with his bayonet, succeeded in killing the gunner. When his bayonet stuck, he detached it from the rifle and killed another gunner with rifle fire. At that time he was fired upon by a machinegun to his immediate left. Cpl. Slaton then moved over open ground under constant fire to within throwing distance, and on his second try scored a direct hit on the second enemy machinegun nest, killing 2 enemy gunners. At that time a third machinegun fired on him 100 yards to his front, and Cpl. Slaton killed both of these enemy gunners with rifle fire. As a result of Cpl. Slaton's heroic action in immobilizing 3 enemy machinegun nests with bayonet, grenade, and rifle fire, the 2 rifle platoons which were receiving heavy casualties from enemy fire were enabled to withdraw to covered positions and again take the initiative. Cpl. Slaton withdrew under mortar fire on order of his platoon leader at dusk that evening. The heroic actions of Cpl. Slaton were far above and beyond the call of duty and are worthy of emulation.

Slaton left the Army while still a Corporal.

Medals and Awards

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart

Death and Burial

Corporal James D. Slaton died on 25 February 1961. He is buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in his birth city of Laurel, MS.

Honoree ID: 1651   Created by: MHOH




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