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First Name: Fitz

Last Name: Lee

Birthplace: Dinwiddie County, VA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Dinwiddie County, VA

Date of Birth: 1866

Date of Death: 14 September 1899

Rank: Private

Years Served:
Fitz Lee

•  Spanish-American War (1898)


Fitz Lee

Private, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipient

Spanish-American War

Private Fitz Lee (1866 - 14 September 1899) was a Buffalo Soldier in the U.S. Army who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during the Spanish-American War.

Fitz Lee joined the Army from his birth place of Dinwiddie County, VA, and on 30 June 1898, he was serving as a Private in Troop M of the 10th Cavalry Regiment. American forces aboard the USSĀ Florida near Tayacoba, Cuba, that day dispatched a small landing party to provide reconnaissance on Spanish outposts in the area. The party was discovered by Spanish scouts and came under heavy fire; their boats were sunk by enemy cannon fire, leaving them stranded on shore.

The men aboard the Florida launched several rescue attempts; the first four were forced to retreat under heavy fire. The fifth attempt, manned by Lee and three other Privates of the 10th Cavalry (Dennis Bell, William H. Thompkins, and George H. Wanton), launched at night and successfully found and rescued the surviving members of the landing party. One year later, on 23 June 1899, all four rescuers were awarded the Medal of Honor for their actions in what had come to be known as the Battle of Tayacoba.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Troop M, 10th U.S. Cavalry

Place and date: Tayabacoa, Cuba, 30 June 1898

Citation: Voluntarily went ashore in the face of the enemy and aided in the rescue of his wounded comrades; this after several previous attempts had been frustrated.

Private Fitz Lee died on 14 September 1899, less than three months after receiving the Medal of Honor. He is buried at Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery in Leavenworth County, KS.

Honoree ID: 1912   Created by: MHOH




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