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First Name: John

Last Name: Ritso



Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Chautauqua County, NY
Middle Name: C.

Date of Birth: 10 June 1918

Date of Death: 26 January 1944

Rank: Staff Sergeant

Years Served:
John C. Ritso

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


John C. Ritso
Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army

On 25-26 August 1944, Staff Sergeant John C. Ritso was serving with Company E, 601st Tank Destroyer Battalion (Attached), 3rd Infantry Division, Fifth U.S. Army.

During that time, SSG Ritso’s unit was in action against German forces in southern France as part of Operation Dragoon, pushing up through France with the 3rd Infantry Division. SSG Ritso’s courageous actions and extraordinary heroism earned him, at the cost of his life, the U.S. Army's second highest award for valor, the Distinguished Service Cross.

Medals and Awards

Distinguished Service Cross
Silver Star Medal with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster
Purple Heart
Army Good Conduct Medal
American Campaign Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with Arrowhead Pin, Silver and 3 Bronze Stars
World War II Victory Medal
Croix de Guerre with Palm (France)
Presidential Unit Citation with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster

Distinguished Service Cross Citation (Synopsis)

Staff Sergeant John C. Ritso (ASN: 0-6904671), United States Army, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving with Company E, 601st Tank Destroyer Battalion, in action against enemy forces on 25 January 1944. Staff Sergeant Ritso's intrepid actions, personal bravery and zealous devotion to duty at the cost of his life, exemplify the highest traditions of the military forces of the United States and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.

Headquarters, Fifth U.S. Army, General Orders No. 121 (1944)


Staff Sergeant John C. Ritso is buried at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery and Memorial in Nettuno, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy, in Plot I, Row 8, Grave 64.


Honoree ID: 207030   Created by: MHOH




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