The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pleasure in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR to
TECHNICIAN FIFTH GRADE
ROBERT DALE MAXWELL
for service as set forth in the following
For The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Technician Fifth Grade Robert Dale Maxwell (ASN: 37330616), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty on 7 September 1944, while serving with Headquarters Company, 3d Battalion, 7th Infantry, 3d Infantry Division, in action near Besancon, France. Technician Fifth Grade Maxwell and three other soldiers, armed only with .45 caliber automatic pistols, defended the battalion observation post against an overwhelming onslaught by enemy infantrymen in approximately platoon strength, supported by 20-mm. flak and machinegun fire, who had infiltrated through the battalion’s forward companies and were attacking the observation post with machinegun, machine pistol, and grenade fire at ranges as close as ten yards. Despite a hail of fire from automatic weapons and grenade launchers, Technician Fifth Grade Maxwell aggressively fought off advancing enemy elements and, by his calmness, tenacity, and fortitude, inspired his fellows to continue the unequal struggle. When an enemy hand grenade was thrown in the midst of his squad, Technician Fifth Grade Maxwell unhesitatingly hurled himself squarely upon it, using his blanket and his unprotected body to absorb the full force of the explosion. This act of instantaneous heroism permanently maimed Technician Fifth Grade Maxwell, but saved the lives of his comrades in arms and facilitated maintenance of vital military communications during the temporary withdrawal of the battalion’s forward headquarters.
Born: 26 Oct. 1920, Boise, Idaho… Headquarters Company, 3d Battalion, 7th Infantry, 3d Infantry Division… Saw action in North Africa, Sicily, Italy, and France… Served until 1945… Also awarded two Silver Stars and the Purple Heart.