A Black WWII Soldier Made a Heroic Stand in Germany. It Took 50 Years for Him to Obtain the Medal of Honor

Army Sgt. 1st Class Edward A. Carter Jr. was born in Los Angeles to missionary mother and father and grew up in India and Shanghai. That background gave him a large publicity to the world, and he grew to become fluent in Hindu, Mandarin and German along with his native English.

In 1932, Carter, then 15, ran away from residence and joined the Chinese language Nationwide Revolutionary Army to battle in opposition to the Japanese invasion. He reached the rank of lieutenant earlier than getting kicked out of the military as soon as his commanding officers found his actual age.

He drifted and ended up in Spain, the place he joined the Abraham Lincoln Brigade and fought on the aspect of the Republicans within the Spanish Civil Conflict. When Carter entered the U.S. Army in September 1941, he instantly stood out due to his earlier fight service.

Carter was shipped to Europe however, as a result of he was Black and the Army was nonetheless segregated, was pressured to function a prepare dinner and a baker in a transportation unit.

After the Battle of the Bulge within the winter of 1944-1945, the Army was determined for reinforcements, and Black troopers had been allowed to volunteer for fight. Carter was assigned to the 56th Armored Infantry Battalion of the twelfth Armored Division,

On March 23, 1945, Carter was driving atop a tank because it was hit by a German rocket. He led three troopers away from the blaze and tried to cross a area. Two had been killed by enemy fireplace and the opposite was severely wounded. Carter continued to make the trek however was shot 5 instances as he seemed to flee.

Pinned down by eight German troopers, Carter killed six of them and captured the 2 survivors, utilizing them as human shields as he crossed the battlefield. These prisoners supplied the Allies with vital particulars about German positions. On the time, Carter was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and promoted to sergeant top quality.

Carter was denied reenlistment in 1949 as a result of he’d beforehand fought with the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, and through the Communist scare that was roiling post-war America, that unit was thought of to have ties to the Soviet Union.

The soldier was devastated by the tip of his Army profession. He was 46 years outdated when he died in 1963 of lung most cancers that was attributed to shrapnel that remained embedded in his neck. Carter was considered one of seven Black WWII service members who had been acknowledged by President Invoice Clinton with the Medal of Honor on Jan. 12, 1997.


His story is being advised in “Medal of Honor: Edward Carter Jr.,” the newest difficulty of the Affiliation of america Army’s graphic novel collection about Army troopers who’ve been awarded the medal. You possibly can view or obtain a free copy on the AUSA web site.

Carter’s story is the primary in AUSA’s new collection for 2023. Upcoming books this 12 months will characteristic World Conflict I hero Samuel Woodfill, Vietnam Conflict helicopter pilot Bruce Crandall and Iraq Conflict soldier Alwyn Cashe.

In its 2022 collection, AUSA beforehand launched books about Delta Power troopers Gary Gordon and Randy Shughart, World Conflict II Buffalo Soldier Vernon Baker, Korean Conflict veteran Ralph Puckett and Civil Conflict veteran Tom Custer. All books from the earlier 4 collection are nonetheless obtainable to learn on-line or for obtain.

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