June 20, 1925 - First Lieutenant Audie L. Murphy (right) is born in Texas. The son of poor Texas sharecroppers, Murphy lied about his age to enlist in 1942. Assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division, he took part in the invasion of Sicily and later landed in Italy. A gifted combat soldier, he earned two Bronze Stars in the weeks after landing at Anzio in January 1944. This was followed by a Distinguished Service Cross on August 15 when he cleared a machine gun nest and several other German positions in southern France. Adding two Silver Stars in October, Murphy recieved a battlefield commission to second lieutenant. With the 3rd Division pushing through France, Murphy was awarded the Medal of Honor when he single-handedly turned back a large German attack near the town of Holtzwihr on January 26, 1945. In the years after the war, Murphy became an actor and starred in 44 films as well as attained the rank of major in the Texas National Guard. Long considered the most decorated American soldier of World War II, this title has been challenged by the career of Lt. Col. Matt Urban.
Photograph Courtesy of the US Army