Messer, John, PhM1c

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Petty Officer First Class
Last Primary NEC
PhM-0000-Pharmacist Mate
Last Rating/NEC Group
Pharmacist's Mate
Primary Unit
1944-1944, PhM-0000, 2nd Marine Division
Service Years
1940 - 1944
PhM-Pharmacist's Mate
One Hash Mark

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Tommy Burgdorf (Birddog), FC2 to remember Messer, John, PO1.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address

Casualty Date
Jul 07, 1944
Hostile, Died
Gun, Small Arms Fire
World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Mariana and Palau Islands Campaign (1944)
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Ribbon Bar

 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1940, Recruit Training (Great Lakes, IL)
 Duty Stations
10th Marine Regiment2nd Marine Division
  1944-1944, PhM-0000, 10th Marine Regiment
  1944-1944, PhM-0000, 2nd Marine Division
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1942-1943 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)
  1943-1943 Gilbert Islands Operation/Battle of Tarawa
  1944-1944 Mariana and Palau Islands Campaign (1944)/Battle of Saipan
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

World War II

Activated on November 1, 1940 at San Diego, California, as the 1st Battalion, 10th Marines (1/10) and were assigned to the 2nd Marine Brigade, Fleet Marine Force. On February 1, 1941, the 2nd Marine Brigade was renamed the 2nd Marine Division.

During January 1942, 1/10 was deployed to American Samoa and detached from the 2nd Marine Division. In November 1942, they were redeployed to Guadalcanal and attached to the 11th Marines, 1st Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force; and in December 1942, reassigned to the 9th Marines.

The 1st Battalion 10th Marines participated in the following World War II campaigns:

and subsequently in the occupation of Japan from September 1945 to June 1946.

During July 1946, 1/10 was relocated to MCB Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; then deactivated on November 18, 1947.

They were then reactivated on December 1, 1948 at MCB Camp Lejeune as the 1st Battalion, 10th Marines.


The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to John A. Messer, Jr., Pharmacist's Mate First Class, U.S. Navy, for extraordinary heroism and conspicuous devotion to duty while serving as a Medical Corpsman with a Marine Artillery Battalion of the Tenth Marines, SECOND Marine Division during action against enemy forces at Saipan, Marianas Islands, on 7 July 1944. When hostile forces overran the artillery battalion and inflicted heavy casualties, Pharmacist's Mate First Class Messer unhesitatingly volunteered to penetrate the Japanese lines to bring out the wounded. Although three of his four men were wounded as he led them across an open field under intense sniper and mortar fire, he courageously continued moving forward and evacuated eight men. Subsequently, with utter disregard for his own personal safety, he made two more trips into this hazardous area, recovering numerous other casualties, but was mortally wounded by enemy sniper fire before completing his third mission. By his courage and efforts in behalf of others at great risk to his own life, Pharmacist's Mate First Class Messer undoubtedly saved many lives, and his steadfast devotion to duty throughout was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

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