William Kelly Harrison
Commander, United States Navy
Texas State Flag
William Kelly Harrison (1870-1928)
Residence: Waco, Texas & San Diego, California

William Kelly Harrison, Medal of Honor recipient, was born in Waco, Texas, on July 30, 1870. He entered the United States Naval Academy on May 28, 1885, was commissioned an Ensign on July 1, 1891, Lieutenant on March 5, 1899, and Commander on January 14, 1911.

WK Harrison USNA PHOTO
United States Naval Academy Photo

On April 20, 1914, Congress authorized the occupation of Vera Cruz, Mexico, to "obtain the fullest recognition of the rights and dignity of the United States." On the night of April 21 Commander Harrison distinguished himself by bringing his ship into the inner harbor without the assistance of a pilot or navigational aids. He had his ship in position on the morning of the twenty-second to use his guns with telling effect.

Harrison retired from the navy in 1918. In 1928 he was living in San Diego, California, where he died on August 15, 1928.


Born at Waco, Texas, July 30, 1870, Commander Harrison was awarded the Medal of Honor for service at Vera Cruz, Mexico, on April 21-22, 1914. The Medal was actually issued to him on December 4, 1915.

The Commander died on August 15, 1928 and was buried in Section 2 of Arlington National Cemetery. His wife, Kate H. Harrison, August 22, 1872-March 29, 1967, is buried with him.

Note: His son, William Kelly Harrison, Jr., graduated from West Point in 1917 and retired from the Army as a Lieutenant General in 1957.



HARRISON, WILLIAM KELLY

Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy. Born: 30 July 1870, Waco, Texas. Accredited to: Texas. G.O. No.: 177, 4 December 1915.

Citation:

For distinguished conduct in battle, engagements of Vera Cruz, 21 and 22 April 1914. During this period, Comdr. Harrison brought his ship into the inner harbor during the nights of the 21st and 22d without the assistance of a pilot or navigational lights, and was in a position on the morning of the 22d to use his guns with telling effect at a critical time.



HARRISON, WILLIAM
COMDR USN
DATE OF DEATH: 08/15/1928
BURIED AT: SECTION 2  SITE LOT 1080
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY

HARRISON, KATE HARRIS WID OF HARRISON, WILLIAM K
DATE OF BIRTH: 08/22/1872
DATE OF DEATH: 03/29/1967
BURIED AT: SECTION 2  SITE 1080 SS
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY



WK HARRISON
Photo courtesy of Raymond L. Collins

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Added: 1 September 1998  Updated: 29 September 2000 Updated: 18 February 2001  Updated: 18 August 2001 Updated: 7 March 2003 Updated: 11 September 2005 Updated: 30 January 2006
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