Rudolph B. Davila
04.27.1916 - 01.26.2002
Served in United States Army
Awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and Medal of Honor
Rudolph B. Davila was a United States Army Staff Sergeant assigned to Company H of the 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division.
On May 28, 1944, his company was involved in an offensive, near Artena, Italy, which broke through the German mountain strongholds surrounding the Anzio beachhead.
His company was under a heavy enemy attack and for an unknown reason, his machine gunners were reluctant to risk putting their guns into action. Realizing that his company was in danger, Davila crawled 50 yards to the nearest machine gun and fired over 750 rounds into the enemy strongholds in the foothills.
Leading by example and, Davila directed their firepower with hand and arm signals until the last two enemy hostile machine-gun nests were silenced. Despite being wounded by the enemy, he continued his assault by engaging the enemy from the turret of a burnt tank.
Davila received a battlefield commission to Lieutenant and even though a Captain in the rifle company said he would recommend Davila for the Medal of Honor, the highest honor for battlefield valor, Davila was instead awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the Army's second-highest military honor.
On June 21, 2000 Davila and 21 other WWII servicemen of Asian descent were bestowed the Medal of Honor at a White House ceremony.