CPL JAMES D. SLATON
157th Infantry, 45th ID
Oliveto, Italy
23 September 1943

slatonCpl. Slaton was lead scout of an infantry squad under orders to flank and knock out enemy resistance who had 2 platoons od Americans pinned down. Moving to the front of his squad, Cpl. Slaton found an enemy Machine gun position. He crept up, and, assaulting it with his bayonet, succeeded in killing the gunner.

When his bayonet stuck in one of the bodies, he detached it from the rifle and killed another gunner with rifle fire. He was fired on by a machinegun forcing CPL Slaton to traverse open ground under constant fire until within throwing distance. On his second try scored a direct hit on the second enemy machinegun nest, killing 2 enemy gunners. At that time a third machinegun fired on him 100 yards to his front, and Cpl. Slaton killed both of these enemy gunners with rifle fire.

As a result of Cpl. Slaton’s heroic action in immobilizing 3 enemy machinegun nests with bayonet, grenade, and rifle fire, the 2 rifle platoons which were receiving heavy casualties from enemy fire, were able to withdraw to safe positions and take the initiative.

Cpl. Slaton finally withdrew under mortar fire on order of his platoon leader at dusk that evening. The heroic actions of Cpl. Slaton were far above and beyond the call of duty and are worthy of emulation.

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