Dec
17
2012

RIP, Senator Daniel Inouye (1924-2012).

This is very sad news: “Democrat Daniel Inouye, the U.S. Senate’s most senior member and a Medal of Honor recipient for his bravery during World War II, has died. He was 88.”

…yes, the Medal of Honor thing wasn’t ever really brought up, much.  Here’s the citation:

Second Lieutenant Daniel K. Inouye distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in action on 21 April 1945, in the vicinity of San Terenzo, Italy.

While attacking a defended ridge guarding an important road junction, Second Lieutenant Inouye skillfully directed his platoon through a hail of automatic weapon and small arms fire, in a swift enveloping movement that resulted in the capture of an artillery and mortar post and brought his men to within 40 yards of the hostile force. Emplaced in bunkers and rock formations, the enemy halted the advance with crossfire from three machine guns. With complete disregard for his personal safety, Second Lieutenant Inouye crawled up the treacherous slope to within five yards of the nearest machine gun and hurled two grenades, destroying the emplacement. Before the enemy could retaliate, he stood up and neutralized a second machine gun nest. Although wounded by a sniper’s bullet, he continued to engage other hostile positions at close range until an exploding grenade shattered his right arm. Despite the intense pain, he refused evacuation and continued to direct his platoon until enemy resistance was broken and his men were again deployed in defensive positions. In the attack, 25 enemy soldiers were killed and eight others captured. By his gallant, aggressive tactics and by his indomitable leadership, Second Lieutenant Inouye enabled his platoon to advance through formidable resistance, and was instrumental in the capture of the ridge. Second Lieutenant Inouye’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the United States Army.

…It originally was ‘merely’ a Distinguished Service Cross, but President Clinton (wisely, I would say) upgraded that, and the medals of several other members of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team.  It is a testament of the Senator that having his right arm shot off did not actually invalid Inouye out of the Army: he served until 1947.  And there is nothing that I can really add to any of that – it’s a record that indeed speaks for itself – so I’ll just end with this:

RIP, Senator Inouye. Our prayers and good wishes for his loved ones.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

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