Our "Medal of Honor" series explores the stories behind the courageous Pennsylvania veterans who have been awarded the prestigious Medal of Honor for their exemplary service in the United States military. In this entry, we recognize the achievements of George H. Ramer, who received the Medal of Honor on January 7, 1953.
George Henry Ramer was born on March 27, 1927 in Meyersdale, PA. He attended elementary school in Salisbury, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Lewisburg High School in 1944 in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the Navy on August 11, 1944 and served until June 5, 1946. Upon his return to civilian life, he entered Bucknell University. While attending college, he enrolled in the Marine Corps Reserve Platoon Leader’s program. He was commissioned in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1950 and taught high school civics, history and problems of democracy in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, before he was called to active duty at his own request on January 3, 1951.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as leader of the 3d Platoon in Company I, in action against enemy aggressor forces. Ordered to attack and seize hostile positions atop a hill, vigorously defended by well-entrenched enemy forces delivering massed small-arms mortar, and machine gun fire, 2d Lt. Ramer fearlessly led his men up the steep slopes. Although he and the majority of his unit were wounded during the ascent, he boldly continued to spearhead the assault. With the terrain becoming more precipitous near the summit and the climb more perilous as the hostile forces added grenades to the devastating hail of fire, he staunchly carried the attack to the top, personally annihilated one enemy bunker with grenade and carbine fire and captured the objective with his remaining eight men. Unable to hold the position against an immediate, overwhelming hostile counterattack, he ordered his group to withdraw and single-handedly fought the enemy to furnish cover for his men and for the evacuation of three fatally wounded marines. Severely wounded a second time, 2d Lt. Ramer refused aid when his men returned to help him and, after ordering them to seek shelter, courageously manned his post until the hostile troops overran his position and he fell mortally wounded. His indomitable fighting spirit, inspiring leadership and unselfish concern for others in the face of death, reflect the highest credit upon 2d Lt. Ramer and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.