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First Name: George

Last Name: Hays

Birthplace: CHN

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Okarche, OK
Middle Name: Price

Date of Birth: 27 September 1892

Date of Death: 07 August 1978

Rank: Lieutenant General

Years Served: 1917 - 1953
George Price Hays

•  World War I (1914 - 1918)
•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


George Price Hays

Lieutenant General, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipient

World War I

Lieutenant General George Price Hays (27 September 1892 - 7 August 1978) was a U.S. Army officer who served during World War I and World War II. He received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions as a young artillery officer during the Second Battle of the Marne in World War I. During World War II, he commanded the 10th Mountain Division in the last few months of the Italian Campaign.

George Price Hays was born on 27 September 1892 in China, where his parents worked as Presbyterian missionaries. He joined the U.S. Army from Okarche, OK. On 14 July 1918, he was a First Lieutenant serving in France with the 10th Field Artillery, 3rd Division. During the Second Battle of the Marne near Greves Farm that day, his unit came under a heavy German artillery barrage and the communication lines were destroyed. Despite the intense fire, Hays rode on horseback between his unit, the command post, and two French batteries for the rest of that day and the next. Although he was severely wounded and had seven horses shot out from under him, his efforts contributed to the halt of the German advance. For these actions, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army 10th Field Artillery, 3rd Division.

Place and date: Near Greves Farm, France, 14-15 July 1918.

Citation: At the very outset of the unprecedented artillery bombardment by the enemy, his line of communication was destroyed beyond repair. Despite the hazard attached to the mission of runner, he immediately set out to establish contact with the neighboring post of command and further establish liaison with 2 French batteries, visiting their position so frequently that he was mainly responsible for the accurate fire therefrom. While thus engaged, 7 horses were shot out from under him and he was severely wounded. His activity under most severe fire was an important factor in checking the advance of the enemy.

Hays commanded the 99th Field Artillery (Pack) from 1940 to 1941; among his subordinates was Captain William Orlando Darby, who went on to found the U.S. Army Rangers.

After the U.S. entry into World War II, Hays participated in the Battle of Monte Cassino in early 1944. He commanded the 2nd Infantry Division's artillery on Omaha Beach during the invasion of Normandy in June of that year.

In late November 1944, after returning to the U.S., Hays took over the 10th Mountain Division when its previous commander fell ill. After training, the division arrived in Italy in January and fought throughout the spring offensive. On 24 April 1945, William Darby was assigned to the division as Hays' assistant commander; he was killed in action six days later.

After the end of the war in Europe, Hays was placed in charge of the occupation forces in Austria. He retired from the military in 1953, having reached the rank of Lieutenant General.

Death and Burial

Lieutenant General George Price Hays died on 7 August 1978. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA, in Section 11, Site 540-2.

Honoree ID: 1771   Created by: MHOH




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