Yoshiharu N. Amakawa
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Corporal Yoshiharu N. Aoyama (ASN: 39024484), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action against the enemy while serving with Cannon Company, 442d Regimental Combat Team, attached to the 34th Infantry Division, on 6 July 1944, in the vicinity of Castellina, Italy. Corporal Aoyama crawled through heavy mortar, artillery and small arms fire to rescue an artillery forward observer who had been wounded by shrapnel. While rendering first aid to the wounded artillery man, Corporal Aoyama suffered a direct hit from an enemy artillery shell and both his legs were blown off below the knees. The artillery man was also hit again, by the same shell, though not seriously. Corporal Aoyama attempted to render himself first aid and retained control of himself until reached by his platoon leader and a medical aid man. When evacuated to the rear and asked how he was, Corporal Aoyama replied, "I'm all right, the others need help more than I do. Treat them first." He continually refused to accept aid until the others had been treated. Not until the medical aid men started to treat him was it discovered the extent of his injuries. Ultimately evacuated, Corporal Aoyama died the next day. The extreme physical and moral courage of Corporal Aoyama and his concern for his fellow comrades when himself mortally wounded reflect the highest traditions of the military service.
Company: Cannon Company
Regiment: 442d Regimental Combat Team
Division: 34th Infantry Division