Sturgis and Clay: Showdown for desegregation in Kentucky Schools

History article by John Trowbridge, Kentucky National Guard

Kentucky Guardsmen hold back a hysterical crowd during civil unrest in Sturgis, Ky., September 1956 (courtesy photo by Myron Davis, Time Life Pictures)

In September 1957, Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, grabbed national headlines when white crowds protested black students’ admission into their all-white school. The state’s National Guard was called in, and they blocked the black student’s entrance into the school. Oppositely, just one year before this mission, Guardsmen were brought to the same area to help the black students get into school.

On May 17, 1954, the landmark decision, Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, the U. S. Supreme Court ruled segregation unconstitutional, thus desegregating public schools nationwide. This decision reversed the Supreme Court’s 1896 ruling, supporting the traditional concept of “separate but equal” facilities. However, there was much resistance to the desegregation of public schools. The full implementation of desegregating our nation would take many years.

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Kentucky’s public schools proceeded with a minimum of difficulty; however, there were some trouble spots.

In 1956, at Sturgis, Ky., which rests in Union County, nine African American students attempted to attend the all-white high school. Initially turned back by a jeering mob, they appealed to Governor A. B. “Happy” Chandler, who turned to the Kentucky National Guard and the Kentucky State Police for support.

The following morning, Guard and State Police personnel held back the crowd as nine black students entered the Sturgis school.

Simultaneously, a similar confrontation was taking place at neighboring Webster County, in Clay, Ky. There, almost all the white students boycotted the grade school when two black students enrolled. The Kentucky Guard and State Police kept order there, outside an almost empty school.

On Sept. 13, State Attorney General Jo M. Ferguson ruled for an orderly process of desegregation. Black students could not enter the all-white schools until the Webster County School Board made adequate plans.

1965 J. B. B. Williams (courtesy photo)

For several days following this decision, the National Guard and State Police were still supporting black students attending classes in Sturgis. On Sept. 19, Ferguson’s ruling in Clay would also apply to Sturgis.

Louisville NAACP lawyer James A. Crumlin immediately sued Sturgis and Clay’s school systems in the Federal District Court. The suit asked the court to enforce the desegregation of these schools.

On Dec. 12, 1956, U. S. District Judge Henry L. Brooks directed the two school boards to file their desegregation plans with the court by Feb. 4, 1957.

Both school boards established desegregation procedures. The following September, Sturgis High School and the schools of Webster County were open to black students.

From Sept. 5 to Sept. 22, 1956, units of the Kentucky Army National Guard and Troopers from the Kentucky State Police restored and maintained law and order. They removed the peril to life and property. They guaranteed the right of all pupils to attend public schools in Sturgis and Clay, Kentucky.

These two rural communities in Western Kentucky grabbed headlines across the country.

The following is the entire story that captured the nation’s interest in those eighteen days in early autumn, 1956.

On Tuesday, Sept. 4, 1956, a crowd of white farmers and miners confronted nine black schoolchildren at Sturgis Consolidated School and prevented them from attending classes.

At about 9 a.m. the next morning, Lt. Col. Taylor Davidson received a phone call from Governor Chandler. He was trying to contact Adjutant General J. J. B. Williams. Davidson referred the message to Somerset, where the General lived. Twenty minutes later, Williams called upon Davidson to alert Major William E. Hall of the 240th Tank Battalion. Hall was to take two jeep-loads of staff Soldiers to Sturgis and report to Colonel Paul Smith, Director of the Kentucky State Police.

The governor asked Williams to fly to Sturgis and survey the situation. Williams would meet Hall there, along with Mayor J. B. Holeman and other city officials. The meetings convinced Williams that local authorities could not guarantee the students’ safety, so he ordered four National Guard units to Sturgis.

Companies A, B, and C of the 240th Tank Battalion soon arrived from Owensboro, Livermore, and Henderson. Louisville’s Headquarters & Service Company joined the list of activated units. Company C was first to bivouac on the school grounds.

Major Hall made it clear to the alarmed townspeople that no martial law was declared. His troops bivouacked only until local authorities needed their help.

The next morning, 210 National Guardsmen patrolled the small coal-mining town armed with M-1 rifles and fixed bayonets. Additional weaponry included submachine guns, carbines, tear-gas guns, and 20-mm and .30-caliber machine guns mounted on M47 “Patton” tanks.

The tanks also came with the 90-mm cannon.

The formidable presence of the Guard was encouraging to the black students. They returned to school that day, walking from their homes in “Boxtown,” a dominantly black community. The state police met them three blocks from the school building. Surrounded by troopers and armed Guardsmen, they continued down the middle of the street.

Signs, riddled with profanity, were tacked onto trees that lined the streets. One of the tamer ones said, “The white people of Sturgis don’t want Negroes to go to white schools.” Another said, “Go back to Dunbar [a black school in nearby Morganfield] where you belong.” Other signs were darker and even more offensive.

The situation became increasingly tense. As the procession reached the school entrance, the shouts and jeers of the 800 people became deafening. They surged forward after the young students. Guardsmen raised their bayoneted rifles and held them back.

General Williams told the Louisville Courier-Journal how the Guard would not escort students into the building because “A child legally entitled to enter school doesn’t need an escort.”

Kentucky Guardsmen escort a black student safely to school during civil unrest in Sturgis, Ky., September 1956. (courtesy photo)

Then, the Guardsmen extended their protection into the school’s hallways as the mob challenged them. Outside, one man grabbed a state trooper, and a brief scuffle ensued. The Troopers arrested seven men on breach-of-peace charges.

After the students were inside the school, Williams ordered an M-47 tank to the front of the building, forcing the crowd to retreat to the far side. Minutes later, the group began chanting for the white students to leave the school. Some students evacuated the building amid applause and cheers from the crowd in a matter of moments.

It was midmorning before the Guardsmen and Troopers restored order. In the meantime, many parents had already taken their children home. When the teachers dismissed their classes, black students left using the rear door. Guardsmen hustled them into awaiting automobiles escorted by state police. The crowd surged into the street and tried to halt the cars, but National Guardsmen quickly cleared a path.

After the day’s events, General Williams called integration a showdown for Kentucky. According to The Courier-Journal, he said integration was, “A matter of principle whether the Supreme Court is the law of the land or not.” He emphasized that the National Guard would remain in Sturgis until the students could safely attend their own choice of school.

Meanwhile, Sturgis citizens claimed it was the National Guard that upset them. Union County School Superintendent, Carlos Oakley, complied with the Supreme Court’s order. He integrated with “deliberate speed,” and said, “I think it’s ridiculous that the National Guard was moved into Sturgis. [Union County] has been a peaceful county.”

Governor Chandler stated Sept. 6 it was necessary to call in the National Guard to guarantee equal rights to Kentucky’s citizens. “When the Governor takes office,” he said, “he puts one hand on the Bible and takes an oath before God to protect the humblest citizen. What we did today is in keeping with the oath I took.”

Chandler further urged the people of Sturgis to “go about their businesses,” saying they just might find out “the children wouldn’t mind [integration].”

The citizenry had another reason to resent National Guard presence: they had already reached an agreement of sorts between the students, their parents, and the school board. Under this agreement, the students would attend Dunbar for one more year until they sanctioned an integration program for the next year. When Governor Chandler ordered in troops, the parents reneged on their decision, and the plan was ruined.

On Thursday night, segregationists flew in from Louisville. One thousand people turned out to hear their speeches. Predictably, the speakers condemned the Supreme Court’s decision. Millard Grubbs, Chairman of the Kentucky Citizens Council’s Board, suggested: “the white people take over.” He accused Chandler of opposing city and county officials’ rights in not letting them decide how to handle things.

A local White Citizens’ Council formed after the segregationists accused the National Guard of being a political tool. W. W. Waller was elected president of the Council. He told the crowd he believed the Guard was ordered into Sturgis, “by certain politicians who wanted to look good in the eyes of New York.” Waller stated Sturgis citizens were “put at gunpoint… because of somebody’s political ambitions.”

As Sturgis’ citizens circulated appeals for Chandler’s impeachment, the Kentucky Federation of Labor praised the governor’s swift action.

In a telegram to Chandler, Secretary-Treasurer Samuel W. Ezelle III wrote, “When the authorities act swiftly and firmly, the forces of lawlessness grow discouraged, and the mob quickly disintegrates…You have demonstrated in the Sturgis case that you intend to stick to your pledges that Kentucky will comply with the Supreme Court decision and that mobs will not rule in our state.”

The Courier-Journal also came out to support Chandler. In a Sept. 6 editorial, they labeled Sturgis, “a situation where delay might spell disaster,” and they cited Chandler for “commendable promptness” in preserving law and order in the state.

They excused Chandler for his actions, but many questioned those of Adjutant General Williams. They criticized the retired Army Colonel and war hero for “playing soldier” and being “trigger-happy.”

“Did you ever see a prettier movement of troops under darkness than that one last night?” he reportedly asked.

Kentucky Guardsmen escort a black student safely to school during civil unrest in Sturgis, Ky., September 1956. (courtesy photo)

Newspapers questioned the martial display he ordered, which had grown to six hundred troops with fixed bayonets. They patrolled in the City of Clay, a town of 2,300 people. There were many guns as Guardsmen lined the streets. Several hundred pup tents lined up the back of the school, on the football field. In the playing yard were scores of jeeps, National Guard trucks, and patrol cars. Men walked around with bayonets and submachine guns, ready for action.

The “action” at Clay started Sept. 7, when a crowd of one hundred people blocked the street leading to Clay Consolidated School. They turned back a car driven by Mrs. Louise Gordon while trying to enroll her two children in the all-white school.

On Sept. 10, the same crowd surrounded and rocked Mrs. Gordon’s car. They tried to overturn it. The group also became hostile to reporters, threatening them and following them about town.

General Williams conferred with Clay officials, who advised him they could handle the situation.

Mayor Herman Z. Clark, an outspoken integration opponent, had been among those who rocked the car that morning and warned the National Guard to keep out of town. Clark encouraged citizens to boycott the school and led the city in following a policy of “passive resistance” to integration.

Clark alluded to the state’s outdated law requiring racial segregation in the schools. He said, “The Supreme Court may say that integration is the law of the land, but as far as I’m concerned…the law of the state of Kentucky is the law here.”

Back in Sturgis, the 243rd Tank Battalion arrived to reinforce the 240th. The next day, Headquarters and Headquarters Service Company, Company B, and Company C of the 201st Engineer Battalion were summoned to Sturgis to relieve the 240th.

On Monday, Sept. 10, seven of nine black students returned to Sturgis to attend school. The Courier-Journal reported, “hundreds” of extra troops were ordered for the expected “showdown.” General Williams, however, defused the situation by calling the Guardsmen to pick the students up at 7:30 a.m., which was an hour before classes began. By the time the expectant crowd formed, the students in question were watching from inside the school building.

Only 50 of 310 white high school students attended the school that day. Although black students’ integration was the leading cause of low attendance, many parents kept their children home because of the National Guard’s presence. Several parents said they would not allow their children to attend school as long as men were standing Guard with loaded rifles and fixed bayonets.

On Wednesday, Sept. 12, National Guardsmen opened the school to the Gordon children at Clay. Troops bivouacked behind the school on the football field. On Sept. 13, boycotting of the Clay school spread as nearly 600 students stayed home to protest integration. Ten of seventeen teachers failed to report back to work, and two resigned. One of those who left, Minvil L. Clark, who was also pastor of the General Baptist Church, said he opposed integration because it led to intermarriage. “We’d soon be a mongrel race,” he said.

State police escorted Mrs. Gordon to the school.

General Williams took her two children by the hand and led them onto the school grounds an hour and a half before classes began. He told one of the state troopers, “Let them go in the front door when it opens, just like white schoolchildren.”

On Sept. 15, Chandler conferred with Attorney General Jo M. Ferguson, Superintendent of Public Instruction Robert R. Martin, and Executive Secretary Harry G. David about withdrawing the Guardsmen from Clay. They waited until Monday to see what happened when the school re-opened. The governor told the press that he would keep Troops at Clay and Sturgis as long as it was necessary to maintain law and order. Meanwhile, he activated the 241st Tank Battalion for additional support.

One administration official said troops would remain at Clay and Sturgis indefinitely. Even if the black students didn’t show up, newspapermen would, and Clay citizens had been just as hostile to them. Whether the controversy centered on students or reporters, the Guard would remain to prevent disorder of any kind. On Sept. 15, W. W. Waller suggested that there be a white boycott of the Sturgis School in a meeting at the American Legion Hall. Waller said boycotting the school the same way as Clay had done was the only way to “back up” what he termed the “original opposition” of Sturgis to integration. Though some students had stayed away since the first day of the disturbances, Waller’s speech marked the beginning of a trend that culminated on Sept. 18 when only 253 of 1,120 students attended classes.

No violence had erupted since Sept. 6 as the black children attended school under Guard. By Sept. 18, only 30 troops, augmented by eight state policemen, were actively on duty at Sturgis.

Late on the afternoon of the 18th, however, the Union and Webster Counties’ Board of Education rekindled the controversy by voting to bar black students from their schools.

Attorney General Ferguson ruled that the Negro students were enrolled illegally since neither Webster nor the Union County school boards had implemented an integration program. Ferguson added that although Mrs. Gordon registered her children at Clay prematurely, she could probably prove in court that the board of education was not integrating with deliberate speed.

On Sept. 19, Principal H. Earl Evans stopped black students attempting to enter Sturgis High School. Surrounded by students and reporters with tape recorders and cameras, Evans read a statement saying the students, illegally enrolled, could not attend classes there.

The boycott officially ended. Whereas 253 students attended school the day before, 702 of the school’s 1,120 students then returned to class. The next day, attendance was back to normal.

Louisville attorney, James Crumlin, was asked to help overturn the school boards’ ruling.

Governor Chandler ordered all Troops from Sturgis and Clay, and the troops withdrew Sept. 22. Fear had won the first round in the fight for racial equality in Kentucky education.


Governor A. B. Chandler’s Executive Order Activating the Kentucky Guard for Sturgis and Clay:

EXECUTIVE ORDER
KENTUCKY NATIONAL GUARD
WHEREAS, The United States Supreme Court has by mandate prohibited the racial segregation of pupils in the nation’s public schools, and
WHEREAS, Civil disturbances have arisen in certain areas of the Commonwealth of Kentucky when local authorities sought to comply with the mandate of the Supreme Court by integrating public schools, and
WHEREAS, local authorities in these areas have been unable to deal with these civil disturbances in a manner which will maintain law and order, remove the peril to life and property, and guarantee the right of all pupils to attend the public schools unmolested,
NOW, THEREFORE, I, A. B. CHANDLER, Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, do hereby direct the Adjutant General of Kentucky, Major General J. J. B. Williams, to order to active state duty any number of units or individuals of the Kentucky National Guard that he deems necessary to restore and maintain law and order, remove the peril to life and property, and guarantee the right of all pupils to attend the public schools.

s/ A. B. Chandler
A. B. Chandler, Governor

s/Thelma L. Stovall
Secretary of State

BLACK STUDENTS AT STURGIS AND CLAY, KENTUCKY
Sturgis (Union County), Kentucky:
James Beasley (age 14)
Shirley Beasley (age 16)
Dudley Bishop
Rodney Bishop
Nathaniel Dixon
Tommy Dixon
Margaret Garnett
Kenneth Greenwell
Kenneth Hayden
James Howard (age 13)

Clay (Webster County), Kentucky:
Bobby Carl Copeland (age 12)
Samuel Lee Copeland (age 14)
James Gordon (age 10)
Teresa Gordon (age 8)

KENTUCKY NATIONAL GUARD UNITS ACTIVATED FOR STATE ACTIVE DUTY
(05-23 September 1956)
240th Tank Battalion
Company A – Owensboro 05-12 September 1956
Company B – Livermore 05-12 September 1956
Company C – Henderson 05-12 September 1956
241st Tank Battalion
Hqs, Headquarters & Service Company – Barbourville 15-23 September 1956
Company A – London 15-23 September 1956
Company B – Somerset 15-23 September 1956
Company C – Williamsburg 15-23 September 1956
243rd Tank Battalion
Hqs, Headquarters & Service Company – Bowling Green 08-17 September 1956
Company A – Russellville 08-17 September 1956
Company B – Hopkinsville 08-17 September 1956
Company C – Madisonville 08-17 September 1956
201st Engineer Battalion
Hqs, Headquarters & Service Company – Owensboro 11-16 September 1956
Company B – Paducah 11-16 September 1956
Company C – Owensboro 11-16 September 1956

149th Engineer Company (Float Bridge) – Paducah 11-16 September 1956

KENTUCKY NATIONAL GUARD PERSONNEL RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR PARTICIPATION AT STURGIS AND CLAY, KENTUCKY
Following the events at Sturgis and Clay the Kentucky National Guard recognized the service of the soldiers involved. A total of eight Kentucky Distinguished Service Medals (KyDSM); five Kentucky Medal for Merit (KyMM); and 153 Kentucky Commendation Ribbons with “V” device for valor (KyCR w/V) were issued to members of the Kentucky Army National Guard.
Kentucky Distinguished Service Medal
LTC Robert L. Bell – Hqs, 149th Armor Group
MAJ Lester L. Rownd, Hqs, 149th Armor Group
MAJ William E. Hall – Hqs, 240th Tank Battalion
MAJ Gerald F. Price – Hqs, 240th Tank Battalion
CPT Ted N. Yeiser – Hqs, 240th Tank Battalion
CPT Robert M. Fiorella – Co. A, 240th Tank Battalion
1LT James R. Hoover – Co. B, 240th Tank Battalion
CPT Thomas E. Lett, Jr. – Co. C, 240th Tank Battalion

Kentucky Medal for Merit
LTC Clarence O. Burch – Hqs, 241st Tank Battalion
MAJ Luther M. Greer – Hqs, 243rd Tank Battalion
MAJ William H. Hightower – Hqs, 243rd Tank Battalion
MAJ John R. Somerville, Jr. – Hqs, 201st Engineer Battalion (C)(A)
1LT Herman M. Kessler, Jr. – Hqs, 240th Tank Battalion

Kentucky Commendation Ribbon with “V” Device
Headquarters, Headquarters and Service Company, 240th Tank Battalion:

CPT Paul R. M. Miller
1LT Horace H. Catinna, IV
1LT James S. Duncan
1LT Billy M. Hedges
1LT Roger W. Montgomery
1LT Frank L. Savage
2LT Jon A. Dean
2LT John A. Keefe
2LT Robert M. Shreve
WO1 Glen S. Rhoades
MSG Walter N. Fletcher, Jr.
MSG Jack L. Herman
MSG Lawrence W. Shireman
MSG Leonard H. Shouse
MSG Edward F. Stevens
SFC James F. Brenzel
SFC Samuel B. Kelley
SFC William C. Merzweiler
SFC Francis E. Metzmeier
SFC Ronald D. Todd
SFC Rudolph P. Vester
SGT Robert P. Baumgarten
SGT Berlin F. Cook
SGT Ted L. Dean 20
SGT Clifford L. Dunaway
SGT George W. Haffler
SGT George D. Lawson
SGT Russell T. Lawson
SGT Joseph L. Miller
SGT James T. Paxton, Jr.
SGT James E. Robinson
CPL David F. Totten
CPL Bruce A. Willis
CPL Theodore M. Zeitz, Jr.
SP2 Walter E. Alpiger
SP2 Bobby J. Bowers
SP2 Eugene P. Coates
SP2 Charles R. Ernst
SP2 Fred R. Fisher
SP2 Harold S. Melone
SP2 Joseph S. Ramsey
SP2 Morris D. Skiles
SP2 John K. Tully
SP2 Robert F. Veech, Jr.
SP3 Thomas J. Bernardy
SP3 James T. Carfield
SP3 Thomas Haffler
SP3 James P. Gilmore
SP3 James E. Davis
SP3 James D. Large
SP3 Alvin R. McLane
SP3 Alvir R. Meador, Jr.
SP3 Edwin L. Rafferty
SP3 Harold D. Ramsey
SP3 Kenneth R. Routon
SP3 John C. Schagene
SP3 Walter L. Scott
SP3 Fred Sower, Jr.
SP3 Charles T. Stasel
SP3 Harold L. Risinger
SP3 David E. Taylor
SP3 Delmar L. Tidwell
SP3 Ronnie L. Veech
SP3 Norman F. Zable
PFC Julius L. Carfield
PFC William M. Ellis
PFC James L. Greene
PFC Kenneth G. Holbrook
PFC Marvin J. Kyser
PFC Richard D. McLane
PFC Henry C. William, Jr.

Company A, 240th Tank Battalion:

2LT William B. Bickwermert
2LT Douglas L. Gipe
2LT Wayland J. Nalley
MSG Wilbur L. Gibson
SFC William L. Elliott
SFC James R. Griffin
SFC Paul F. Hodskins
SFC Carl J. Martin
SGT James Allen
SGT William E. Aud
SGT Joseph M. Howard
SGT Gilbert O. Moore
SGT Thomas C. Morton
SGT Herbert D. Patterson
SGT James B. Payne
SGT Willie W. Wells, Jr.
CPL James W. Peveler
CPL Lee J. Poston
SP2 Max G. Cambron
SP2 Donald F. Chapman
SP2 Onie L. Eagan
SP2 Joseph F. Green
SP2 Leon W. Hamilton
SP2 Miles H. Simmons
SP2 Charles E. Taylor
SP2 Wayne R. Woodward
PV1 Joseph H. Christian
PV2 Charles D. Simmons
PV2 Teddy Huff
PFC Robert L. Wethington
SP3 William N. Able
SP3 Larry G. Bidwell
SP3 Robert W. Bowlds, Jr.
SP3 Terrel B. Cornelius
SP3 Joseph D. Crisp
SP3 Carroll C. Ferguson
SP3 Charles F. Graham
SP3 William C. Greenlee
SP3 Carl L. Hults
SP3 Gerald R. Mullen
SP3 Freddie J. Newton
SP3 Billy J. Smith
SP3 Thomas E. Sparks
SP3 John W. Tipmore, III
SP3 Hershel B. Whitaker
SP2 John O. Williams
SP3 Louis H. Woodall
PFC Douglas R. Bean
PFC Ronald L. Bidwell
PFC Joseph C. Burns, Jr.
PFC Gerald L. Clark
PFC Gary L. Ford
PFC Raymond L. Hines
PFC Drye H. Holden
PFC Jackie H. Leibfried
PFC Carroll Nave
PFC Patrick I. O’Flynn
PFC William M. O’Flynn
PFC Donald R. Owen
PFC Donald J. Thompson
PFC Milton L. Weikel
PFC David M. Wells

Company B, 240th Tank Battalion:

1LT Ellis A. Price
2LT Albert G. Humphrey
2LT James E. Searcy
2LT Ernest G. Sutherlin
CW2 Lester D. Willis
MSG Raymond M. Frizzell
MSG Gilbert E. Girvin
MSG James C. Hamilton
SFC Samuel F. Durham
SFC Bobbie W. Ford
SFC Wesley M. Frizzell
SFC Paschall L. Owen
SFC James F. Vertrees
SGT Vernon L. Frashure
SGT Junior W. Slinker
SP2 Vernon L. Austin
SP2 Arthur V. Bates
SP2 Roy F. Bell
SP2 Ray F. Frashure
SP2 Darrell Kassinger
SP2 Orval C. Owen
SP2 Winfield R. Prindle
SP2 John P. Puckett
SP2 Benjamin F. Quigg, IV
SP2 Charles R. Rule
SP2 Gary Sartain
SP2 Winford S. Shockiee
SP2 Jerry M. Shultz
SP2 Little J. St. Clair
SP2 Otis C. St. Clair
SP2 Harold R. Stewart
SP2 Edward M. Trunnell
SP2 Jerry D. Wigginton
SP3 Franklin F. Beller
SP3 Robert B. Carman
SP3 Donald B. Ford
SP3 Billy R. Frizzell
SP3 Fred E. Girvin
SP3 Medley Hoover
SP3 Hubert G. Humphrey
SP3 Jerry W. Jenkins
SP3 Julian L. Johnson
SP3 William B. Lacefield
SP3 Billy R. McDowell
SP3 Eddie R. Whitaker
SP3 Robert E. West
SP3 Carl W. Colburn
PFC Rondle L. Evans
PFC Elbert R. Frashure
PFC Ralph E. Loyd
PFC Edgar W. St. Clair
PFC Billy R. Taylor
PFC Jerry G. Willoughby
PFC James V. Woodburn
PV2 Carl E. Ashton
PV2 James D. Kinney
PV2 Donnie C. Layton
PV2 Bobby J. Rager
PV2 Tommie L. St. Clair
PV2 Roy E. Taylor

Company C, 240th Tank Battalion:

MSG Henry Z. Bantly
MSG Buel D. McGuffey
MSG Noah G. Murphy
SFC Robert C. Dalton
SFC James D. Jones
SFC Leo Oglesby
SFC John A. Thompson, Jr.
SFC James H. Walker
SGT Carroll Lockridge
SGT Albert R. Schwallier
SP2 Larry J. Johnston
SP2 William L. Locke, Jr.
SP2 Martin F. Pike
SP2 Tommy D. Powell
SP2 James H. Rutledge
SP2 Arnold R. Young
SP2 Billy G. Young
SP3 Robert J. Christian
SP3 Terry C. Clement
SP3 Herbert L. Farmer, Jr.
SP3 George E. Goodson
SP3 Lilburn K. Knight
SP3 Thomas Long, Jr.
SP3 David S. Pike
SP3 William E. Pirtle
SP3 Elvin D. Pruitt
SP3 Woodrow Ransom, Jr.
SP3 Charles H. Roberts
SP3 Robert L. Rowley
SP3 Earnest Walker, Jr.
PFC Roy Adams, Jr.
PFC Hoyt L. Ball
PFC Hubert L. Hawkins
PFC Alvie E. Lord
PFC Jackie A. Nunn
PFC J. B. Oglesby
PFC Henry F. Ransom
PFC Charles A. Shelton
PFC Donald G. Walker
PFC Carroll W. Weldon
PFC Richard C. Williams
PV2 Walter T. Barron
PV2 Bobbie W. Caton
PV2 Curtis R. Hawkins
PV2 Eugene M. Littlepage
PV2 Forrest J. Meuth
PV2 Robert N. Simpkins
PV2 Paul S. Thrasher
PV2 Robert E. Townsend
PV1 Leven E. Dunn
PV1 Noble H. Jones
PV1 Jackie E. Williams

Medical Detachment, 240th Tank Battalion:

2LT Townsel E. L. Adams
SP2 Floyd T. Curd
SP3 Eric S. Forrister
PFC George T. Oeswein
PFC Davey L. Philpott
PV2 Gary G. Grawmeier
PV2 Neil N. Claycomb
PV2 Kenneth L. Shelton

RANK:
LTC = Lieutenant Colonel
MAJ = Major
CPT = Captain
1LT = First Lieutenant
2LT = Second Lieutenant
CW2 = Chief Warrant Officer
WO1 = Warrant Officer
MSG = Master Sergeant
SFC = Sergeant First Class
SGT = Sergeant
CPL = Corporal
PFC = Private First Class
PV1 = Private
PV2 = Private
SP2 = Specialist 2
SP3 = Specialist 3

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