|Cpl. Victor H. Espinoza
Cpl. Victor H. Espinoza will receive the Medal of Honor
posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an Acting
Rifleman in Company A, 23d Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division
during combat operations against an armed enemy in Chorwon, Korea on
August 1, 1952.
Cpl. Victor H. Espinoza
will receive the medal for his courageous actions in 1952, officials
said in a statement. Espinoza was an acting rifleman in Company A, 23d
Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division.
Espinoza is receiving the honor for his actions in Chorwon, Korea, officials said
On Aug. 1, 1952, Espinoza and his unit were pinned down by enemy
fire, according to the U.S. Army’s website. Espinoza charged toward the
enemy, firing his rifle and throwing grenades, the website says.
Espinoza single-handedly took down a machine gun and it’s crew. He found
and destroyed a covert enemy tunnel. He then destroyed two enemy
bunkers with defenders in them, the website says. Espinoza continue his
charge after running out of ammunition. He used enemy grenades and threw
them into their trenches. Finally, he used explosives to destroy a
tunnel sheltering enemy troops.
In 1953, Espinoza was award the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions.
The President of the United States of America, under the provisions of
the Act of Congress approved July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting
the Distinguished Service Cross to Corporal Victor H. Espinoza, United
States Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military
operations against an armed enemy of the United Nations while serving
with Company A, 1st Battalion, 23d Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry
Division. Corporal Espinoza distinguished himself by extraordinary
heroism in action against enemy aggressor forces at Chorwon, Korea, on 1
August 1952. While spearheading an attack to secure “Old Baldy,”
Corporal Espinoza’s unit was pinned down by withering artillery, mortar,
and small-arms fire from strongly fortified positions. Fully aware of
the odds against him, Sergeant Espinoza stormed forward in a daring
assault and, firing his rifle and throwing grenades, silenced a
machine-gun and its crew. Continuing up the fire-swept slope, he
neutralized a mortar, wiped out two bunkers, and killed its defenders.
After expending his ammunition, he employed enemy grenades, hurling them
into the hostile trenches and inflicting additional casualties.
Observing a tunnel on the crest of the hill which could not be destroyed
by grenades, he obtained explosives, entered the tunnel, set the
charge, and destroyed the tunnel and the troops it sheltered. His
fearless display of valor inspired all who observed him and enabled the
unit to continue the assault and to secure the strongpoint.
In addition to the Medal of Honor, Espinoza received the Distinguished
Service Cross (this award will be upgraded to the Medal of Honor on Mar. 18), National Defense Service Medal, Korean Service Medal with one
Bronze Service Star, Combat Infantryman Badge, United Nations Service
Medal, and Republic of Korea-Korean War Service Medal.