Born on November 9, 1931, he enlisted in the Navy as a Seaman Recruit in 1951. He was trained as a Hospitalman and then sent to the United States Marine Corps Barracks at Camp Pendleton, California for assignment. In February 1953 he left for Korea and was attached to the Fifth Marines. A little more than a month later he was killed-in-action near Sanae-dong and was awarded theMedal of Honor for his actions there.
His platoon experienced heavy fire and he administered first aid to the wounded even though critically wounded himself. He remained behind to direct the evacuation of the wounded and the area was again swept by enemy mortar fire and he was again painfully wounded, this time fatally. His citation, in part, reads, “By exceptional fortitude, inspiring initiative and self-sacrificing efforts, he oudoubtedly saved the lives of many Marines.”
He was subsequently returned to the United States and was buried in Section 33 of Arlington National Cemetery.
HAMMOND, FRANCIS C.
Rank and organization: Hospital Corpsman, U.S. Navy, attached as a medical corpsman to 1st Marine Division. Place and date: Korea, 26-27 March 1953. Entered service at: Alexandria, Va. Birth: Alexandria, Virginia.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a HC serving with the 1st Marine Division in action against enemy aggressor forces on the night of 26-27 March 1953. After reaching an intermediate objective during a counterattack against a heavily entrenched and numerically superior hostile force occupying ground on a bitterly contested outpost far in advance of the main line of resistance. HC Hammond's platoon was subjected to a murderous barrage of hostile mortar and artillery fire, followed by a vicious assault by onrushing enemy troops. Resolutely advancing through the veritable curtain of fire to aid his stricken comrades, HC Hammond moved among the stalwart garrison of marines and, although critically wounded himself, valiantly continued to administer aid to the other wounded throughout an exhausting 4-hour period. When the unit was ordered to withdraw, he skillfully directed the evacuation of casualties and remained in the fire-swept area to assist the corpsmen of the relieving unit until he was struck by a round of enemy mortar fire and fell, mortally wounded. By his exceptional fortitude, inspiring initiative and self-sacrificing efforts, HC Hammond undoubtedly saved the lives of many marines. His great personal valor in the face of overwhelming odds enhances and sustains the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
HAMMOND, FRANCIS COLTON
- VETERAN SERVICE DATES: Unknown
- DATE OF BIRTH: 11/09/1931
- DATE OF DEATH: 03/26/1953
- DATE OF INTERMENT: 06/10/1953
- BURIED AT: SECTION 33 SITE 9011
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
COURTESY OF THE AMERICAN BATTLE MONUMENTS COMMISSION
Francis Colton Hammond
Born at Alexandria, Virginia, November 9, 1931.
Hospitalman, US Navy.|
Killed in Action March 26, 1953 in Korea.
Hospitalman Hammond was a U.S. Navy corpsman serving with the 1st Marine Division. During the night of March 26-27, 1953 while defending “Outpost Vegas”, his platoon was subjected to a murderous barrage of enemy mortar and artillery fire followed by assault by the enemy. Although seriously wounded, he assisted his wounded comrades for four hours. When his platoon was directed to withdraw, he assisted the evacuation of the wounded until he was struck by an enemy mortar round. For his leadership and great valor, Hospitalman Hammond was awarded the Medal of Honor and the Purple Heart.
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard