Thursday, November 11, 2010


On August 13, 1950, at just 19 years of age, Raymond was granted the 3rd highest medal available (among more than 200 medals) to a soldier in the US Army. It might also be interesting to know that this medal is only granted to 1 in about 500,000 soldiers and only 1 Silver Star has been awarded since the current conflict with Iraq has ensued. This gives you some idea of its extreme significance.
The following is a synopsis of the actual presentation of the award made on August 13, 1950:
By direction of President Harry S Truman, the Silver Star (which you can see on display here tonight) for gallantry in action is awarded to the following named officers and enlisted men: Private First Class Raymond E. Collingsworth, RA15412586, Field Artillery, United States Army, a member of Battery B, 52nd Field Artillery Battalion, 24th Infantry Division, is awarded the Silver Star for gallantry in action on 16 July 1950, near the Kum River, Korea. The 19th Regimental Combat Team, to which the 52nd Field Artillery battalion was attached, had been overrun by overwhelmingly large enemy forces. The enemy had also succeeded in placing a road-block between the withdrawing American units and safety. Several attempts had been made to clear the block. Private Collingsworth approached the senior officer present and volunteered to undertake any duty assigned to him. In the face of withering enemy fire, he assisted in rallying drivers, in overturning wrecked vehicles blocking the road, and in moving unattended vehicles that were impeding progress. He assisted in leading the wounded on operable vehicles and volunteered to man a machine gun that was mounted on one of them. With the approach of dusk, it was determined that a last effort should be made to clear the road-block since, at that time, enemy fire would be less accurate. Just before the signal to move was given, the driver of a quarter-ton truck abandoned his vehicle, thus blocking all behind him. Private Collingsworth coolly took over. He secured an automatic rifleman and a rifleman to assist himself and the convoy started. Private Collingsworth drove skillfully and courageously, refusing to stop even when other vehicles did so. He drove through three islands of enemy resistance in his break for safety. By his daring coolness and gallantry, Private Collingsworth assisted materially in extricating a group of completely surrounded men from certain annihilation. His actions brought high credit to himself and to the military service. He entered the military service from Dayton, Ohio.