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First Name: Oscar

Last Name: Schmidt

Birthplace: Philadelphia, PA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Home of Record: PA

Date of Birth: 25 March 1896

Date of Death: 24 March 1973

Rank or Rate: Chief Petty Officer

Years Served:
Oscar Schmidt, Jr.

•  World War I (1914 - 1918)


Oscar Schmidt, Jr.

Chief Gunner's Mate, U.S. Navy

Medal of Honor Recipient

World War I

Chief Gunner's Mate Oscar Schmidt, Jr. (25 March 1896 - 24 March 1973) was a U.S. Navy sailor who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during World War I.

Oscar Schmidt, Jr. was born on 25 March 1896 in Philadelphia, PA. He joined the Navy from his birth state of Pennsylvania and served during and after World War I, rising to the rank of Chief Gunner's Mate. On 9 October 1918, while a crewmember on USS Chestnut Hill (ID-2526), he assisted in the rescue of crewmen from the burning submarine chaser USS SC-219 following a gasoline explosion. For this act, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Chief Gunner's Mate, U.S. Navy.

Place and date: At sea, 9 October 1918.

Citation: For gallant conduct and extraordinary heroism while attached to the U.S.S. Chestnut Hill, on the occasion of the explosion and subsequent fire on board the U.S. submarine chaser 219. Schmidt, seeing a man, whose legs were partly blown off, hanging on a line from the bow of the 219, jumped overboard, swam to the sub chaser and carried him from the bow to the stern where a member of the 219's crew helped him land the man on the afterdeck of the submarine. Schmidt then endeavored to pass through the flames amidships to get another man who was seriously burned. This he was unable to do, but when the injured man fell overboard and drifted to the stern of the chaser Schmidt helped him aboard.

Death and Burial

Chief Gunner's Mate Oscar Schmidt, Jr. died on 24 March 1973, the day before his 77th birthday. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA, in Section 11, Lot 116-LH.

Honoree ID: 1820   Created by: MHOH




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