b. 15/08/1930 Highland, Illinois. d. 13/08/1952 Bunker Hill, Korea.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 12-13/08/1952 Bunker Hill, Korea.
Kilmer was born in Highland Park, Illinois. He quit high school at seventeen to enlist in the U.S. Navy on August 16, 1947 from Houston, Texas. He enlisted as an Apprentice Seaman, and after his recruit training, he attended Hospital Corps School, San Diego, California. After graduation in April 1948, he advanced in rate (rank) to hospital apprentice, and then hospitalman on September 1, 1950.
Kilmer was assigned to the hospital ship USS Repose (AH-16) when the Korean War began in June 1950. His 4-year enlistment term expired in August 1951, but he decided to reenlist the Navy. In April 1952, after running afoul of a superior, Kilmer chose to volunteer to serve in the Fleet Marine Force (FMF). After completing instruction for combat field training in June at the Field Medical Service School at Camp Pendleton, California, he was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division.
In Korea, Kilmer was a member of H Company, 3rd Battalion, 7 Marines. On August 12-13, he took part in the attack on "Bunker Hill" in Korea. He attended to the wounded during the battle and was wounded, then was mortally wounded after using his body a wounded Marine from enemy fire. For his actions on August 13, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action against enemy aggressor forces. With his company engaged in defending a vitally important hill position well forward of the main line of resistance during an assault by large concentrations of hostile troops, HM Kilmer repeatedly braved intense enemy mortar, artillery, and sniper fire to move from 1 position to another, administering aid to the wounded and expediting their evacuation. Painfully wounded himself when struck by mortar fragments while moving to the aid of a casualty, he persisted in his efforts and inched his way to the side of the stricken marine through a hail of enemy shells falling around him. Undaunted by the devastating hostile fire, he skillfully administered first aid to his comrade and, as another mounting barrage of enemy fire shattered the immediate area, unhesitatingly shielded the wounded man with his body. Mortally wounded by flying shrapnel while carrying out this heroic action, HM Kilmer, by his great personal valor and gallant spirit of self-sacrifice in saving the life of a comrade, served to inspire all who observed him. His unyielding devotion to duty in the face of heavy odds reflects the highest credit upon himself and enhances the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for another.
BURIAL LOCATION: SAN JOSE BURIAL PARK, SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS.
Lot 349 Block 9 Section 1 Grave 6
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