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Home > Real Men > Military > Audie Murphy
 

Audie Murphy

Dates

Born June 20, 1924 in Kingston, Texas.
Died May 28, 1971 in Virginia.

Marriage

Wanda Hendrix. 1949. Divorced 1951.
Pamela Archer. 1951.

Children

Terry Michael. Born 1952.
James Shannon. Born 1954.

Biography

Audie Leon Murphy was the most decorated combat soldier of World War II. Murphy earned 24 citations, including awards from Belgium, France, and the Medal of Honor.

Audie Murphy Murphy enlisted in the United States Army on June 30, 1942, at Dallas. After basic training at Camp Wolters, Texas, Murphy joined the 385th infantry at Fort Meade, Maryland. On February 8, 1943, Murphy was sent to Europe. Murphy accepted a combat commission to second lieutenant on October 14, 1944.

On August 15, 1944, Staff Sergeant Murphy landed near Ramatuelle, France with the first wave of troops. When his men were stopped by heavy machine gun and small-arms fire from a hill, Murphy advanced alone killing six Germans, wounding three, and capturing five.

On January 26, 1945, Murphy was commanding Company B of the 15th Infantry, 3rd Division near Holtzwiher, France. Murphy's company was attacked by six tanks and several waves of infantry. Murphy ordered his men to withdraw to positions in the woods, while he remained forward, directed artillery fire by telephone. Behind him, a tank destroyer took a direct hit and started burning.

With enemy tanks around him, Murphy climbed onto the burning tank destroyer (which was in danger of exploding at any moment) and fired its .50 caliber machine gun at the Germans. Murphy killed dozens of enemy infantry, causing their attack to falter. The Germans made every attempt to eliminate Murphy, some approaching as close as 10 yards before being wiped out by the machine gun.

Murphy sustained a leg wound, but continued fighting until the ammunition ran out. Murphy withdrew to his company, refused medical attention, and led a counterattack that forced the German to withdraw. For this action, Murphy was awarded the Medal of Honor on August 9, 1945.

After returning to the United States, Murphy was contacted by James Cagney due to his appearance on the cover of Life Magazine. Cagney provided acting training, and his career took off after the publication of his best-selling autobiography, To Hell and Back.

Murphy starred in 27 movies, including playing himself in the film version of To Hell and Back. Murphy died in an airplane accident in 1971 and is buried in Arlington National Cemetary.

 
Audie Murphy on the web...
Audie Murphy on Wikipedia
AudieMurphy.com - The Official Web Site For The Audie Murphy Research Foundation

 
 

 
 
   
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