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Rufus Geddie Herring



Fading light dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky,
    Gleaming bright.
From afar drawing nigh,    
    Falls the night.

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, From the hills,
    From the sky.
All is well, safel
y rest,
    God is nigh.

Then good night, Peaceful night,
Till the light of the dawn
    Shineth bright,
God is near, do not fear,
  Friend, good night.

Hollywood Cemetery
  Lot 279  

herring_rufus2.jpg (81708 bytes)

Born:  June 11, 1921 at Roseboro, NC

Entered Service in the US Navy from Roseboro, NC

Earned The Medal of Honor During World War II For heroism February 17, 1945 at Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands

Died:  January 31, 1996 at the age of 74

Boldly closing the strongly fortified shores of Iwo Jima under the devastating fire of Japanese coastal defense guns, Lieutenant (j.g.) Herring directed shattering barrages of 40mm and 20mm gunfire against hostile beaches until struck down by the enemy's savage counter-fire which blasted the 449's heavy guns and whipped her decks into sheets of flame. Regaining consciousness despite profuse bleeding he was again critically wounded when a Japanese mortar crashed the conning station, instantly killing or fatally wounding most of the officers and leaving the ship wallowing without navigational control. Upon recovering the second time, Lieutenant Herring resolutely climbed down to the pilothouse and, fighting against his rapidly waning strength, took over the helm, established communication with the engineroom, and carried on valiantly until relief could be obtained. When no longer able to stand, he propped himself against empty shell cases and rallied his men to the aid of the wounded; he maintained position in the firing line with his 20mm guns in action in the face of sustained enemy fire, and conned his crippled ship to safety.



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