Second Lieutenant John E. Butts
Second Lieutenant John Edward Butts is being inducted into the OCS Hall of Fame for Valorous Combat Service, He received the Medal of Honor posthumously for his actions above and beyond the call of duty during the Normandy Campaign in World War II.
Butts was born 4 August 1920, in Medina, New York. He was one of six sons of Jerry and Anna Butts. In 1939, he joined the National Guard in Medina at age 17. He began National Guard training at Fort McClellan in Alabama in October 1940. After training, he was assigned to F Company, 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry. In February 1942, he was sent to Hawaii. He returned to the United States in November to attend Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia. He was commissioned a second lieutenant on November 29, at age 19.
He was the platoon leader of E Company, 2nd Battalion, 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division participating in the North Africa Campaign. Afterwards, he was part of the invasion of Sicily where he was decorated for bravery and then the Normandy Campaign in June 1944.
Butts was wounded on 14 June near Orglandes, France. He was wounded again on 16 June as his unit crossed the Douve River. On 23 June he was fatally wounded by machine gun fire while attacking a well defended enemy held hill. For his heroic actions and leadership under enemy fire on June 14, 16, and 23, Butts was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.
He was buried in the United States Military Cemetery at Normandy. In 1948, his remains were removed and re-interred in St. Mary's Cemetery in Medina.
His Military Awards Include Medal of Honor, Combat Infantryman Badge , Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart w/2 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Good Conduct Medal, American Defense Service Medal, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal w/ 4 bronze stars, World War II Victory Medal and the French Croix de Guerre w/ Palm.