United States Naval Construction Battalions, better known as the Seabees, form the Naval Construction Force of the United States Navy. Their nickname is a heterograph of the first initials "C. B." from the words Construction Battalion. Depending upon how the word is used "Seabee" can refer to one of three things: all the enlisted personnel in the USN's occupational field-7, all officers and enlisted assigned to the Naval Construction Force, or the U. S. Navy's Construction Battalions. Seabees serve outside the NCF. During WWII they served in both the Naval Combat Demolition Units and the UDTs as well as the United States Marine Corps. Today they can be found in the Naval Support Unit: Department of State and under both Commanders, Naval Surface Force Alantic/Pacific fleets. Naval Construction Battalions were conceived of as a replacement for civilian construction companies working for the US Navy after the United States was drawn into World War II with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941.
At that time the U. S. had 70,000 civilians working on military installations overseas. International law made it illegal for them to resist enemy attack, as to do so would classify them as guerrillas, for which they could be summarily executed, what happened when the Japanese invaded Wake Island; the Seabees would consist of skilled workers who would be trained to drop their tools if necessary and take up their weapons at a moment's notice to defend themselves. The concept model was that of a USMC–trained battalion of construction tradesmen that would be capable of any type of construction, anywhere needed, under any conditions or circumstance, it was realized that this model could be utilized in every theater of operations, as it was seen to be flexible and adaptable. The use of USMC organization allowed for smooth co-ordination, integration or interface of both the NCF and Marine Corps elements. In addition, Seabee Battalions could be deployed individually or in multiples as the project scope and scale dictated.
What distinguishes Seabees from Combat Engineers are the skill sets. Combat Engineering is but a sub-set in the Seabee toolbox, they have a storied legacy of creative field ingenuity, stretching from Normandy and Okinawa to Iraq and Afghanistan. Admiral Ernest King wrote to the Seabees on their second anniversary, "Your ingenuity and fortitude have become a legend in the naval service." Seabees believe that anything they are tasked with they "Can Do". They remain so today. In the October 1944 issue of Flying magazine the Seabees are described as "a phenomenon of World War II". In 2017, the Seabees celebrated their 75 years of service without having changed from Admiral Ben Moreell's conceptual model. World War I precursor In 1917, the Twelfth Regiment was organized at Naval Training Station Great Lakes; when the US entered World War I in April 1917, the Navy had an immediate requirement to expand the Great Lakes Station in order to house and train 20,000 naval recruits, this number would rise to 50,000 by the end of the year.
Lieutenant Malachi Elliott, a graduate of the US Naval Academy, was appointed Public Works Officer at Great Lakes on 18 June 1917, at which time about 500 enlisted men had been assigned to the Public Works Department. Seeing that the department would need to expand with skilled craftsmen, draftsmen and other professional and technical people, he began to screen incoming recruits with these skills. Finding many, but not enough, he expanded to recruiting civilians outside of the installation, getting many men willing to join the Navy as petty officers, with the understanding that qualified men could apply for commissions; this allowed the Public Works Department to grow to nearly 600 men by July 1917. They were organized into the Twelfth Regiment, the Public Works Department because staff officers could not exercise military command. Lieutenant William C. Davis was appointed commanding officer of the regiment, he exercised military control, but the Public Works Officers exercised technical control.
In October 1917, the regiment began building Camp Paul Jones at San Diego. With its completion, on 30 December 1917, the regiment became "fully operational" with 1,500 men organized into three battalions. By April 1918, the regiment consisted of 2,400 in five battalions. Men were withdrawn for assignments in the US and abroad. In spring of 1918, 100 men were given special mechanics and ordnance training before being sent to St. Nazaire, France, to assemble Naval Railway Batteries, they would join the gun crews and perform combat duties along the railway lines in proximity to the German lines. The Twelfth Regiment reached its peak strength 5 November 1918. However, with the end of the war on 11 November 1918, the regiment faded away by the end of 1918. Formation In the early 1930s, the idea that the Twelfth Regiment pioneered was still in the minds of many Navy Civil Engineers; the planners of the Bureau of Yards and Docks began providing for "Navy Construction Battalions" in their contingency war plans.
In 1934 Captain Carl Carlson's version of the plan was circulated to the Navy Yards, this idea of "Navy Construction Battalions" would be tentatively approved by Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral William Harrison Standley. In 1935, Rear Admiral Norman Smith, Chief of BuDocks, selected Captain Walter Allen, the War Plans Officer, to represent BuDocks on the War Plans Board. Captain Allen presented the bureau's concept of "Naval Construction Battalions" to the Board; the concept was adopted for inclusion in the Rainbow war plans
A hospital corpsman is an enlisted medical specialist of the United States Navy, who may serve in a U. S. Marine Corps unit; the corresponding rank within the United States Coast Guard is Health Services Technician. Hospital corpsmen work in a wide variety of capacities and locations, including shore establishments such as naval hospitals and clinics, aboard ships, as the primary medical caregivers for sailors while underway. Hospital corpsmen are the only medical care-giver available in many fleet or Marine units on extended deployment. In addition, hospital corpsmen perform duties as assistants in the prevention and treatment of disease and injury and assist health care professionals in providing medical care to sailors and their families, they may function as clinical or specialty technicians, medical administrative personnel and health care providers at medical treatment facilities. They serve as battlefield corpsmen with the Marine Corps, rendering emergency medical treatment to include initial treatment in a combat environment.
Qualified hospital corpsmen may be assigned the responsibility of independent duty aboard ships and submarines. Hospital corpsmen were trained at Naval Hospital Corps School, Great Lakes and the U. S. Naval Hospital Corps School San Diego, until the 2011 Base Realignment and Closure Bill caused Hospital Corps School to be relocated to the Medical Education and Training Campus at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas. Naval Hospital Corps School was located at NRMC Balboa in San Diego, California. During the Vietnam War, many of the 16-week Naval Hospital Corps school graduates went directly to 8404 Field Medical Service School at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, or Camp Pendleton, for 4 weeks of field training, before deployment to a Marine Corps unit in South Vietnam; the colloquial form of address for a hospital corpsman is "Doc". In the United States Marine Corps, this term is used as a sign of respect. Prior to the establishment of the Hospital Corps, enlisted medical support in the Navy was limited in scope.
In the Continental Navy and the early U. S. Navy, medical assistants were assigned at random out of the ship's company, their primary duties were to keep the irons hot and buckets of sand at the ready for the operating area. It was commonplace during battle for the surgeons to conduct amputations and irons were used to close lacerations and wounds. Sand was used to keep the surgeon from slipping on the bloody ship deck. Corpsmen were referred to as a loblolly boy, a term borrowed from the Royal Navy, a reference to the daily ration of porridge fed to the sick; the nickname was in common use for so many years that it was officially recognized by the Navy Regulations of 1814. In coming decades, the title of the enlisted medical assistant would change several times—from loblolly boy, to nurse, to bayman. A senior enlisted medical rate, surgeon's steward, was introduced in 1841 and remained through the Civil War. Following the war, the title surgeon's steward was abolished in favor of apothecary, a position requiring completion of a course in pharmacy.
Still, there existed pressure to reform the enlisted component of the Navy's medical department—medicine as a science was advancing foreign navies had begun training medically skilled sailors, the U. S. Army had established an enlisted Hospital Corps in 1887. Navy Surgeon General J. R Tryon and subordinate physicians lobbied the Navy administration to take action. With the Spanish–American War looming, Congress passed a bill authorizing establishment of the U. S. Navy Hospital Corps, signed into law by President William McKinley on 17 June 1898. Three rates were created therein—hospital apprentice, hospital apprentice first class, hospital steward, a chief petty officer. A revision in 1916 established a new rate structure. With the introduction of a second junior rate there were now hospital apprentice second class and hospital apprentice first class; the rating title for petty officers was established as pharmacist's mate, following the pattern of some of the Navy's other ratings. Pharmacist's mate third class, second class, first class were now the petty officers, chief pharmacist's mate was the CPO.
This structure remained in place until 1947. A total of 684 personal awards were awarded to hospital corpsmen, including 22 Medals of Honor, 55 Navy Crosses, 237 Silver Stars. During World War I, hospital corpsmen served throughout the fleet, earning particular distinction on the Western Front with the Marine Corps. In the United States Navy in World War II, hospital corpsmen assigned to Marine units made beach assaults with the Marines in every battle in the Pacific. Corpsmen served on thousands of ships and submarines. Three unassisted emergency appendectomies were performed by hospital corpsmen serving undersea and beyond hope of medical evacuation; the Hospital Corps has the distinction of being the only corps in the U. S. Navy to be commended in a famous speech by Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal after the conclusion of the war. Following the war, the Hospital Corps changed its rating title to the generic term it had used all along—hospital corpsman; the rates of hospital corpsman third class, second class, first class, chief hospital corpsman were supplemented by senior chief hospital corpsman and master chief hospital corpsman in 1958.
Hospital corpsmen continued to serve at sea and ashore, and
United States Marine Corps
The United States Marine Corps referred to as the United States Marines or U. S. Marines, is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for conducting expeditionary and amphibious operations with the United States Navy as well as the Army and Air Force; the U. S. Marine Corps is one of the four armed service branches in the U. S. Department of Defense and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States; the Marine Corps has been a component of the U. S. Department of the Navy since 30 June 1834, working with naval forces; the USMC operates installations on land and aboard sea-going amphibious warfare ships around the world. Additionally, several of the Marines' tactical aviation squadrons Marine Fighter Attack squadrons, are embedded in Navy carrier air wings and operate from the aircraft carriers; the history of the Marine Corps began when two battalions of Continental Marines were formed on 10 November 1775 in Philadelphia as a service branch of infantry troops capable of fighting both at sea and on shore.
In the Pacific theater of World War II the Corps took the lead in a massive campaign of amphibious warfare, advancing from island to island. As of 2017, the USMC has around some 38,500 personnel in reserve, it is the smallest U. S. military service within the DoD. As outlined in 10 U. S. C. § 5063 and as introduced under the National Security Act of 1947, three primary areas of responsibility for the Marine Corps are: Seizure or defense of advanced naval bases and other land operations to support naval campaigns. This last clause derives from similar language in the Congressional acts "For the Better Organization of the Marine Corps" of 1834, "Establishing and Organizing a Marine Corps" of 1798. In 1951, the House of Representatives' Armed Services Committee called the clause "one of the most important statutory – and traditional – functions of the Marine Corps", it noted that the Corps has more than not performed actions of a non-naval nature, including its famous actions in Tripoli, the War of 1812, numerous counter-insurgency and occupational duties, World War I, the Korean War.
While these actions are not described as support of naval campaigns nor as amphibious warfare, their common thread is that they are of an expeditionary nature, using the mobility of the Navy to provide timely intervention in foreign affairs on behalf of American interests. The Marine Band, dubbed the "President's Own" by Thomas Jefferson, provides music for state functions at the White House. Marines from Ceremonial Companies A & B, quartered in Marine Barracks, Washington, D. C. guard presidential retreats, including Camp David, the Marines of the Executive Flight Detachment of HMX-1 provide helicopter transport to the President and Vice President, with the radio call signs "Marine One" and "Marine Two", respectively. The Executive Flight Detachment provides helicopter transport to Cabinet members and other VIPs. By authority of the 1946 Foreign Service Act, the Marine Security Guards of the Marine Embassy Security Command provide security for American embassies and consulates at more than 140 posts worldwide.
The relationship between the Department of State and the U. S. Marine Corps is nearly as old as the corps itself. For over 200 years, Marines have served at the request of various Secretaries of State. After World War II, an alert, disciplined force was needed to protect American embassies and legations throughout the world. In 1947, a proposal was made that the Department of Defense furnish Marine Corps personnel for Foreign Service guard duty under the provisions of the Foreign Service Act of 1946. A formal Memorandum of Agreement was signed between the Department of State and the Secretary of the Navy on 15 December 1948, 83 Marines were deployed to overseas missions. During the first year of the MSG program, 36 detachments were deployed worldwide; the Marine Corps was founded to serve as an infantry unit aboard naval vessels and was responsible for the security of the ship and its crew by conducting offensive and defensive combat during boarding actions and defending the ship's officers from mutiny.
Continental Marines manned raiding parties, both at ashore. America's first amphibious assault landing occurred early in the Revolutionary War on 3 March 1776 as the Marines gained control of Fort Montague and Fort Nassau, a British ammunition depot and naval port in New Providence, the Bahamas; the role of the Marine Corps has expanded since then. The Advanced Base Doctrine of the early 20th century codified their combat duties ashore, outlining the use of Marines in the seizure of bases and other duties on land to support naval campaigns. Throughout the late 19th and 20th centuries, Marine detachments served aboard Navy cruisers and aircraft carriers. Marine detachments served in their traditional duties as a ship's landing force, manning the ship's weapons and providing shipboard security. Marine detachments were augmented by members of the ship's company for landing parties, such as in the First Sumatran Expedition of 1832, continuing in the Caribbean and Mexican campaigns of the early 20th centuries.
Iraq Campaign Medal
The Iraq Campaign Medal is a military award of the United States Armed Forces, created by Executive Order 13363 of U. S. President George W. Bush on 29 November 2004, became available for general distribution in June 2005; the medal was designed by the U. S. Army Institute of Heraldry and was awarded during the Iraq War, from 29 November 2004 to 31 December 2011; the medal is bronze in 1 1⁄4 inches in diameter. The obverse depicts a north-oriented relief of the map of Iraq, surmounted by two lines representing the Tigris and Euphrates rivers throughout, superimposed over a palm wreath. Above is the inscription "IRAQ CAMPAIGN." On the reverse, the Statue of Freedom surmounts a sunburst, encircled by two scimitars pointing down with the blades crossing at the tips. Below is the inscription "FOR SERVICE IN IRAQ." The medal is suspended from a ribbon 1 3⁄8 inches wide. The stripes of the ribbon invoke the colors of the Iraqi flag and are: 5⁄32 inch scarlet at the edges, followed by 1⁄16 inch white, 1⁄32 inch green, 1⁄16 inch white.
The white is separated by a 5⁄32 inch black with a 7⁄16 inch stripe in chamois in the center. The Iraq Campaign Medal was awarded to any member of the U. S. military who performed duty within the borders of Iraq for a period of thirty consecutive days or sixty non-consecutive days. The medal was awarded retroactively from 19 March 2003 until the end of Operation New Dawn on 31 December 2011. Personnel who engaged in combat with an enemy force, or personnel wounded in combat or wounded as a result of a terrorist attack within Iraq received the Iraq Campaign Medal regardless of the number of days spent within the country. In addition, each day participating in aerial missions as a "regularly assigned air crewmember of an aircraft flying sorties into, out of, within or over Iraq and in direct support of the military operations" established a single day of eligibility; when the required minimum days of eligibility were accrued, the medal was awarded. The medal was awarded posthumously to any service member who died in the line of duty within Iraq, including from non-combat injuries such as accidents and mishaps.
On 23 April 2012, an order terminating the award of the Iraq Campaign Medal was issued by the Department of Defense. The order is effective to 31 the day Operation New Dawn ended. U. S. military personnel serving inside the borders of Iraq after December 2011 will not be eligible to receive the ICM. The Iraq Campaign Medal replaced the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal for service in Iraq from 19 March 2003, through 30 April 2005. Personnel who received the GWOT-EM for Iraq service were given the option to exchange the medal for the Iraq Campaign Medal; the medals were not authorized for the same period of service in Iraq, any Iraq service which followed the Iraq Campaign Medal's creation was recognized only with the ICM. U. S. military personnel serving post-2014 in the Iraq conflict were awarded the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and not the Iraq Campaign Medal as the latter conflict had ended and the former conflict was nameless at the time and the U. S. government did not designate the fighting to be a military campaign.
However, the U. S. government dubbed their operations in Iraq post-2014 as "Operation Inherent Resolve", in March 2016, the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal was created. The IRCM is now awarded to those who have served in missions in Iraq against ISIL from 15 June 2014 to the present; those who were awarded the GWOT-EM for serving in Iraq from 15 June 2014 to 30 March 2016, can put in a request for the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal instead. The following are the established campaign phases for the Iraq Campaign Medal: The Iraq Campaign Medal is authorized the following devices: Arrowhead device - For qualified Army and Air Force service members. Campaign stars - For each campaign phase that a service member participates in, a 3⁄16 inch bronze campaign star is worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the medal, with a 3⁄16 inch silver star being worn in lieu of five bronze stars. Fleet Marine Force Combat Operation Insignia - The ICM may be awarded with the Fleet Marine Force Combat Operation Insignia for qualified Navy service members such as hospital corpsmen assigned to Marine Corps units that participate in combat during the assignment.
The FMFCOI is rather worn alongside any campaign stars. Examples of campaign stars worn on the ICM service ribbon: Awards and decorations of the United States military Afghanistan Campaign Medal Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal Global War on Terrorism Service Medal Iraq Commitment Medal United Kingdom Iraq Medal United Kingdom Iraq Medal Emering, Edward John; the Decorations and Medals of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Claymont, DE: Orders and Medals Society of America. ISBN 978-1-890974-34-3
Robert R. Ingram
Robert Roland Ingram is a retired United States Navy hospital corpsman third class and a recipient of the United States' highest military decoration—the Medal of Honor—for heroism above and beyond the call of duty in the Vietnam War. Ingram was born in Florida, he joined the U. S. Navy from Coral Gables, Florida in September 1963, he completed recruit training and Hospital Corps School in San Diego and the Fleet Marine Force, Field Medical Service School at Camp Pendleton, California. Afterwards, he was assigned to 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, he was reassigned and transferred to C Company of the 1st Battalion, 7th Marines. He was sent with his battalion from Okinawa to Vietnam in July 1965 as a hospital corpsman third class. For treating several Marines in his platoon of C Company while under enemy fire on February 8, 1966, he was awarded the Silver Star Medal, for gallantry in action. On March 28, during a firefight with North Vietnamese forces in Quang Ngai Province, Republic of Vietnam, Ingram continued to attend to wounded Marines after being wounded by enemy gunfire four times.
Ingram's Medal of Honor was presented to him by President Bill Clinton on July 10, 1998 during a ceremony in the White House, alongside twenty-four of the men he served with in Vietnam. The delay in the award, made more than thirty years after the battle, was attributed to lost paperwork. Ingram's military awards and decorations include: Ingram's official Medal of Honor citation reads: The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pleasure in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR to HOSPITAL CORPSMAN THIRD CLASS ROBERT R. INGRAM UNITED STATES NAVY for service as set forth in the following CITATION: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as Corpsman with Company C, First Battalion, Seventh Marines against elements of a North Vietnam Aggressor battalion in Quang Ngai Province Republic of Vietnam on 28 March 1966. Petty Officer Ingram accompanied the point platoon as it aggressively dispatched an outpost of an NVA battalion.
The momentum of the attack rolled off a ridge line down a tree covered slope to a small paddy and a village beyond. The village tree line exploded with an intense hail of automatic rifle fire from 100 North Vietnamese regulars. In mere moments, the platoon ranks were decimated. Oblivious to the danger, Petty Officer Ingram crawled across the bullet spattered terrain to reach a downed Marine; as he administered aid, a bullet went through the palm of his hand. Calls for "CORPSMAN" echoed across the ridge. Bleeding, he edged across the fire swept landscape, collecting ammunition from the dead and administering aid to the wounded. Receiving two more wounds before realizing the third wound was life-threatening, he looked for a way off the face of the ridge, but again he heard the call for corpsman and again, he resolutely answered. Though wounded three times, he rendered aid to those incapable until he reached the right flank of the platoon. While dressing the head wound of another corpsman, he sustained.
From sixteen hundred hours until just prior to sunset, Petty Officer Ingram pushed, pulled and doctored his Marines. Enduring the pain from his many wounds and disregarding the probability of his demise, Petty Officer Ingram's intrepid actions saved many lives that day. By his indomitable fighting spirit, daring initiative, unfaltering dedications to duty, Petty Officer Ingram reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. /S/ Bill Clinton List of Medal of Honor recipients List of Medal of Honor recipients for the Vietnam War Mishalov, Neil. "Robert R. Ingram". Retrieved 2007-07-13. "Interview with Ingram". Pritzker Military Museum & Library. March 23, 2009. Retrieved 2014-09-09. "Charley Company 1/7 Medal of Honor recipients". Home of the Marines and Sailors of Charley Company 1/7. March 1, 2009. Archived from the original on December 2, 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-09
United States Secretary of the Navy
The Secretary of the Navy is a statutory officer and the head of the Department of the Navy, a military department within the Department of Defense of the United States of America. The Secretary of the Navy must be a civilian by law, at least 5 years removed from active military service; the Secretary is appointed by the President and requires confirmation by a majority vote of the Senate. The Secretary of the Navy was, from its creation in 1798, a member of the President's Cabinet until 1949, when the Secretary of the Navy was by amendments to the National Security Act of 1947 made subordinate to the Secretary of Defense; the Department of the Navy consists of two Uniformed Services: the United States Navy and the United States Marine Corps. The Secretary of the Navy is responsible for, has statutory authority to "conduct all the affairs of the Department of the Navy", i.e. as its chief executive officer, subject to the limits of the law, the directions of the President and the Secretary of Defense.
In effect, all authority within the Navy and Marine Corps, unless exempted by law, is derivative of the authority vested in the Secretary of the Navy. Enumerated responsibilities of the SECNAV in the before-mentioned section are: recruiting, supplying, training and demobilizing; the Secretary oversees the construction and repair of naval ships and facilities. SECNAV is responsible for the formulation and implementation of policies and programs that are consistent with the national security policies and objectives established by the President or the Secretary of Defense; the Secretary of the Navy is a member of the Defense Acquisition Board, chaired by the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Logistics. Furthermore, the Secretary has several statutory responsibilities under the Uniform Code of Military Justice with respect to the administration of the military justice system for the Navy & the Marine Corps, including the authority to convene general courts-martial and to commute sentences.
The principal military advisers to the SECNAV are the two service chiefs of the naval services: for matters regarding the Navy the Chief of Naval Operations, for matters regarding the Marine Corps the Commandant of the Marine Corps. The CNO and the Commandant act as the principal executive agents of the SECNAV within their respective services to implement the orders of the Secretary; the United States Navy Regulations is the principal regulatory document of the Department of the Navy, any changes to it can only be approved by the Secretary of the Navy. Whenever the United States Coast Guard operates as a service within the Department of the Navy, the Secretary of the Navy has the same powers and duties with respect to the Coast Guard as the Secretary of Homeland Security when the Coast Guard is not operating as a service in the Department of the Navy; the Office of the Secretary of the Navy known within DoD as the Navy Secretariat or just as the Secretariat in a DoN setting, is the immediate headquarters staff that supports the Secretary in discharging his duties.
The principal officials of the Secretariat include the Under Secretary of the Navy, the Assistant Secretaries of the Navy, the General Counsel of the Department of the Navy, the Judge Advocate General of the Navy, the Naval Inspector General, the Chief of Legislative Affairs, the Chief of Naval Research. The Office of the Secretary of the Navy has sole responsibility within the Department of the Navy for acquisition, auditing and information management, legislative affairs, public affairs and development; the Chief of Naval Operations and the Commandant of the Marine Corps have their own separate staffs, the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters Marine Corps. Military awards of the United States Department of the Navy Secretary of the Navy Council of Review Boards Stephen Mallory, the only Secretary of the Navy of the Confederate States of America Official website
George Edward Wahlen
George E. Wahlen was a United States Army major who served with the United States Navy as a hospital corpsman attached to a Marine Corps rifle company in World War II and was awarded the U. S. military's highest decoration for valor, the Medal of Honor, for heroism above and beyond the call of duty during the Battle of Iwo Jima. He was wounded in the Vietnam War. Whalen was born in Ogden, Utah on August 8, 1924. Wahlen, at age 17 in 1943, trained as an aircraft mechanic and served at Hill Field in Utah, leading five other mechanics as crew chief for the United States Army Air Corps, he volunteered for the military draft. He enlisted in the U. S. Naval Reserve in Salt Lake City, on June 11, 1943 as a seaman apprentice. One week he went on active duty and completed recruit training at the Naval Training Station in San Diego, California. On July 20, he was advanced to seaman apprentice second class and attended the Naval Hospital Corpsman School in San Diego. After graduating, he was transferred to the Naval Hospital there and advanced to seaman apprentice first class on November 1, 1943.
On December 1, he was advanced to pharmacist mate third class and assigned that month to the Field Medical Service School at Camp Elliot, California for fielding training. After completion of his training there in February 1944, he was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 26th Marines, 5th Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, California. In July 1944, the division left for Hawaii for further training. On November 1, he was advanced to pharmacist mate second class and was assigned to Fox Company, 2/26 Marines of the division, he landed with his unit on Iwo Jima on February 19, 1945, was wounded by an enemy grenade on February 26 in combat. Refusing evacuation, he continued going on to help wounded Marines on the battlefield, on March 2, he was wounded in the back and refused to be evacuated again, continued on aiding more Marines until he was shot in the leg on March 3 for a third time and unable to walk. However, he crawled his way for 50 yards to attend to one more wounded Marine before he was evacuated.
He was evacuated to Guam and California. Wahlen, two other sailors, eleven Marines each were presented the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman outside the White House on October 5, 1945. Wahlen spent nine months recovering from his wounds before being honorably discharged on December 19, 1945. In 1948, he re-enlisted in the United States Army as a medical technician, became an officer, served in the Korean War and the Vietnam War, he retired from the army in 1968, with the rank of major after being wounded and awarded a Purple Heart. As a civilian he worked for over a decade with the Veteran's Administration, where he retired at the age of 59, he is the subject of the book The Quiet Hero: The Untold Medal of Honor Story of George E. Wahlen at the Battle for Iwo Jima by Gary W. Toyn. Wahlen died at age 84, was buried on June 12, 2009. A large memorial service was held on June 2009, attended by veterans of all ranges; the main entrance to the George E. Wahlen Medical Center was draped in black banners in his memory.
Before his death, he was Utah's last living Medal of Honor recipient. Whalen's citation reads: The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pleasure in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR to HOSPITAL CORPSMAN SECOND CLASS GEORGE E. WAHLEN UNITED STATES NAVY RESERVE for service as set forth in the following CITATION: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 2d Battalion, 26th Marines, 5th Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima in the Volcano group on 3 March 1945. Painfully wounded in the bitter action on 26 February, Wahlen remained on the battlefield, advancing well forward of the frontlines to aid a wounded marine and carrying him back to safety despite a terrific concentration of fire. Tireless in his ministrations, he disregarded all danger to attend his fighting comrades as they fell under the devastating rain of shrapnel and bullets, rendered prompt assistance to various elements of his combat group as required.
When an adjacent platoon suffered heavy casualties, he defied the continuous pounding of heavy mortars and deadly fire of enemy rifles to care for the wounded, working in an area swept by constant fire and treating 14 casualties before returning to his own platoon. Wounded again on 2 March, he gallantly refused evacuation, moving out with his company the following day in a furious assault across 600 yards of open terrain and rendering medical aid while exposed to the blasting fury of powerful Japanese guns. Stouthearted and indomitable, he persevered in his determined efforts as his unit waged fierce battle and, unable to walk after sustaining a third agonizing wound, resolutely crawled 50 yards to administer first aid to still another fallen fighter. By his dauntless fortitude and valor, Wahlen served as a constant inspiration and contributed vitally to the high morale of his company during critical phases of this strategically important engagement, his heroic spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of overwhelming enemy fire upheld the highest traditions of the U.
S. Naval Service. Harry S. Truman In 2004, President George W. Bush signed legislation authorizing the naming of the George E. Wahlen Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City. Since federal buildings cannot bear the name of a living person, Congress approved special legislation allowing for an exemption in the case of Wahlen. A veterans' nursing home in Ogden, which opened in January