Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Medal of Honor Recipient: Lt. Jimmie Waters Monteith Jr. - Colleville-sur-Mer, France

Interesting Places I've Photographed
Lt. Jimmie Waters Monteith Jr.
Normandy American Cemetery
Colleville-sur-Mer, France
Topic: Medal of Honor Recipient

N 49° 21.638 W 000° 51.610

Quick Description: 

The grave of Medal of Honor recipient Lt. Jimmie Waters Monteith Jr. is located at the Normandy American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, France. Plot: Section I, Row 20, Grave 12

Long Description:

Jimmie W. Monteith Jr. was born July 1, 1917 in Low Moor, Virginia. He attended Virginia Polytechnic Institute as a member of the class of 1941. He joined the Army in October 1941 and attended Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia.

Upon receiving his commission he joined the 16th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division. During World War II, he fought in North Africa, and Sicily. In November 1943, his unit was transferred to England to in preparation for the Normandy Invasion. He was killed in action near Colleville-sur-Mer, France on June 6, 1944.

His Medal of Honor citation reads:

"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty on 6 June 1944, near Colleville-sur-Mer, France. 1st Lt. Monteith landed with the initial assault waves on the coast of France under heavy enemy fire. Without regard to his own personal safety he continually moved up and down the beach reorganizing men for further assault. He then led the assault over a narrow protective ledge and across the flat, exposed terrain to the comparative safety of a cliff. Retracing his steps across the field to the beach, he moved over to where 2 tanks were buttoned up and blind under violent enemy artillery and machine-gun fire. Completely exposed to the intense fire, 1st Lt. Monteith led the tanks on foot through a minefield and into firing positions. Under his direction several enemy positions were destroyed. He then rejoined his company and under his leadership his men captured an advantageous position on the hill. Supervising the defense of his newly won position against repeated vicious counterattacks, he continued to ignore his own personal safety, repeatedly crossing the 200 or 300 yards of open terrain under heavy fire to strengthen links in his defensive chain. When the enemy succeeded in completely surrounding 1st Lt. Monteith and his unit and while leading the fight out of the situation, 1st Lt. Monteith was killed by enemy fire. The courage, gallantry, and intrepid leadership displayed by 1st Lt. Monteith is worthy of emulation."

In recognition of his status of a Medal of Honor recipient, his grave marker in the Normandy American Cemetery in Colleville-sur-Mer, France is a marble cross inscribed in gold lettering. The upper part of the cross contains an image of the Medal of Honor. Inscribe below is:

1 LT 16 INF 1 DIV


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