ANTHONY PETER DAMATO, USMC (DECEASED)
Medal of Honor Citation
Corporal Anthony P. Damato, awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously, served with an assault company of the 2d Battalion, 22d Marines, 5th Amphibious Corps, on Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll, Marshall Islands. On the night of 19-20 February 1944, while in a foxhole with two companions, he threw himself upon an enemy grenade, absorbing the explosion in his body. He was instantly killed.
Born 28 March 1922, in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, he was educated in the elementary and high schools of Shenandoah. Prior to enlistment he was last employed as a truck driver.
He enlisted in the Marine Corps on 8 January 1942. He went to Londonderry, North Ireland, in May of that year. He distinguished himself during the first year of his enlistment, volunteering for special duty with a select invasion party that took part in the North African landings. He was advanced in rate for especially meritorious conduct in action while serving aboard ship at Arzeau, Algeria, 8 November 1942, when he landed with an assault wave entering the port from seaward and assisted in boarding and seizing vessels in the harbor as well as the seizure of the port. He returned to the United States in March 1943, and three months later sailed for Pacific duty.
On 9 April 1945, the tiny mining community of Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, turned out en masse to pay homage to Cpl Damato at the presentation ceremonies for the Medal of Honor. The presentation was made by BGen M. C. Gregory, USMC, in the Cooper High School were Cpl Damato had been a student, and was presented to his mother.
Corporal Damato was initially buried in the Temporary American Cemetery on Kiririan Island in the Marshall Islands. Later, his remains were reinterred in the National Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, Hawaii.
World War II 1941-1945 Medal of Honor