Douglas A. Munro

10.11.1919 - 09.27.1942

U.S. Coast Guard

U.S. Coast Guard's only Medal of Honor recipient 

Douglas Albert Munro is the only member of the U.S. Coast Guard that has received the Medal of Honor for actions performed during service.

Munro was piloting a Higgins boat during the Battle of Guadalcanal. During the battle, Munro was given orders to pick up Marines off of the beachhead and drop them off at Lunga Point. While other ship pilots were starting to retreat from heavy enemy gunfire, Munro pushed forward and retrieved the Marines off of the beach, all while providing covering fire for them.

Once successfully pulling away from the beach, Munro spotted a beached Higgins boat. Still, under enemy fire, Munro maneuvered his boat into a place where the Marines on board were able to attach a line between the two ships. Once the ship was freed from the shallow water Munro was struck in the base of his skull by enemy gunfire.

One of Munro’s fellow Guardsmen was able to get the two ships to Lunga Point. After the Marines were unloaded, Munro gained consciousness just long enough to ask, “Did they get off?” Munro died shortly after he was given the word that the Marines got off safely.

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