Lucian Adams

Lucian Adams

177 Adams.jpg

Lucian was born on the 26th of October, 1922 in Port Arthur, Texas, into a family of eleven other children. After high school, he spent two years in a plant making military landing crafts and in February of 1943, Lucian enlisted in the US Army. The following Summer, he found himself with the 3rd Infantry Division landing on the shores near St Tropez in the South of France on the same landing crafts he had just spend two years making prior to enlisting. It was his actions while being stopped by three enemy machine gun nests that would earn him the Medal of Honor. The citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty on 28 October 1944, near St. Die, France. When his company was stopped in its effort to drive through the Mortagne Forest to reopen the supply line to the isolated third battalion, S/Sgt. Adams braved the concentrated fire of machineguns in a lone assault on a force of German troops. Although his company had progressed less than 10 yards and had lost 3 killed and 6 wounded, S/Sgt. Adams charged forward dodging from tree to tree firing a borrowed BAR from the hip. Despite intense machinegun fire which the enemy directed at him and rifle grenades which struck the trees over his head showering him with broken twigs and branches, S/Sgt. Adams made his way to within 10 yards of the closest machinegun and killed the gunner with a hand grenade. An enemy soldier threw hand grenades at him from a position only 10 yards distant; however, S/Sgt. Adams dispatched him with a single burst of BAR fire. Charging into the vortex of the enemy fire, he killed another machinegunner at 15 yards range with a hand grenade and forced the surrender of 2 supporting infantrymen. Although the remainder of the German group concentrated the full force of its automatic weapons fire in a desperate effort to knock him out, he proceeded through the woods to find and exterminate 5 more of the enemy. Finally, when the third German machinegun opened up on him at a range of 20 yards, S/Sgt. Adams killed the gunner with BAR fire. In the course of the action, he personally killed 9 Germans, eliminated 3 enemy machineguns, vanquished a specialized force which was armed with automatic weapons and grenade launchers, cleared the woods of hostile elements, and reopened the severed supply lines to the assault companies of his battalion.

Lucian became known as the Tornado from Texas among his men and when a messenger had told him that he had been recommended for the Medal of Honor, he chose to not believe it since he had heard the same thing in Italy when he single-handedly destroyed a German machine-gun position, for which he received the Bronze Star for. He didn't have a choice to believe it though when he received orders to travel home in order to receive the Medal of Honor from President Roosevelt. Lucian didn't receive the Medal from the president since Roosevelt had died on the 12th of April 1945 but he ended up receiving it from Lieutenant General Alexander Patch on the 22nd of April, 1945 in the Nuremberg Zeppelin Stadium. A large US flag had been draped over the stadium's giant swastika and after the ceremony, in which five 3rd Division soldiers received the Medal of Honor, US engineers removed the US flag and blew up the swastika.

Lucian returned to Texas after his time in Europe and worked for the Veterans Administration in San Antonio for over 40 years. He retired from the VA in 1986 and he had told a reporter once that as a veterans' counselor, he never brought up his service. He never brought up his combat experience and he never mentioned his Medal of Honor. Lucian Adams died on the 31st of March, 2003 at the age of 80 and is buried in the Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio, Texas; Section AI, site 555.

Thomas E Atkins

Thomas E Atkins

Harold C Agerholm

Harold C Agerholm