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Cecil H. Clark

Place of Birth: Michigan, Hillsdale
Home of record: Kalkaska Michigan


Navy Cross

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Awarded for actions during the Second Nicaraguan Campaign

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Corporal Cecil H. Clark (MCSN: 214460), United States Marine Corps, for distinguished service in the line of his profession as commander of a patrol of seventeen enlisted men of the Guardia Nacional de Nicaragua, 24 February 1932, operating in the vicinity of Caracol, Department of Leon, Nicaragua. Corporal Clark and his patrol of seventeen men, while proceeding in formation on a densely overgrown trail, through a defile, were suddenly attacked from three sides by a group of bandits under the bandit Jefes Salgado and Umanzor, estimated at two hundred and fifty, armed with automatic weapons, rifles and dynamite bombs. The first burst of bandit fire killed one Guardia and wounded two others and killed the mule upon which Clark was mounted. A dynamite bomb, which exploded a the same time, stunned and temporarily put Clark out of action. After being revived by one of his Guardia, Clark reorganized his patrol, placed it in the best available positions and took up the fire fight. His patrol at this time had become completely surrounded. Clark then took a detachment of six men and personally leading them, he using a Thompson sub-machine gun, charged up one of the flanking hills through the brush in the face of automatic and rifle fire and drove the bandits from their key position. He reformed his patrol in the new position and continued the fight. After two hours of fighting, and by skillful maneuvering under fire, Clark and his patrol completely routed the bandit group and scattered elements of it in all directions, inflicting a loss of eight known killed and many wounded while suffering themselves only two more wounded. Corporal Clark by his display of heroism, leadership and skillful judgment turned what might have been a disaster into a brilliant success.

General Orders: Authority - USMC Communiqué: 214460 ACB-vpd (1 June 1932)

Action Date: 24-Feb-32

Service: Marine Corps

Rank: Corporal

Division: Guardia Nacional de Nicaragua