The President of the United States
in the name of The Congress
takes pleasure in presenting the
Medal of Honor
SJOGREN, JOHN C.
Rank and Organization: Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company I, 160th Infantry, 40th
Infantry Division. Place and Date Near San Jose Hacienda, Negros, Philippine
Islands, 23 May 1945. Entered Service at: Rockford, Mich. Birth: Rockford,
Mich. G.O. No.: 97, 1 November 1945.
Citation: He led an attack
against a high precipitous ridge defended by a company of enemy riflemen, who were
entrenched in spider holes and supported by well-sealed pillboxes housing automatic
weapons with interlocking bands of fire. The terrain was such that only 1 squad could
advance at one time; and from a knoll atop a ridge a pillbox covered the only approach
with automatic fire. Against this enemy stronghold, S/Sgt. Sjogren led the first squad to
open the assault. Deploying his men, he moved forward and was hurling grenades when he saw
that his next in command, at the opposite flank, was gravely wounded. Without hesitation
he crossed 20 yards of exposed terrain in the face of enemy fire and exploding dynamite
charges, moved the man to cover and administered first aid. He then worked his way forward
and, advancing directly into the enemy fire, killed 8 Japanese in spider holes guarding
the approach to the pillbox. Crawling to within a few feet of the pillbox while his men
concentrated their bullets on the fire port, he began dropping grenades through the narrow
firing slit. The enemy immediately threw 2 or 3 of these unexploded grenades out, and
fragments from one wounded him in the hand and back. However, by hurling grenades through
the embrasure faster then the enemy could return them, he succeeded in destroying the
occupants. Despite his wounds, he directed his squad to follow him in a systematic attack
on the remaining positions, which he eliminated in like manner, taking tremendous risks,
overcoming bitter resistance, and never hesitating in his relentless advance. To silence
one of the pillboxes, he wrenched a light machinegun out through the embrasure as it was
firing before blowing up the occupants with handgrenades. During this action, S/Sgt.
Sjogren, by his heroic bravery, aggressiveness, and skill as a soldier, single-handedly
killed 43 enemy soldiers and destroyed 9 pillboxes, thereby paving the way for his
company's successful advance.