Medal Of Honor Recipient: William Lawley Jr.

Medal Of Honor Recipient: William Lawley Jr. - Nine Line Apparel
On February 20, 1944, First Lieutenant William Lawley Jr of the United States Army Air Corps was serving as a B-17 pilot over Europe. While on a bombardment mission, 20 enemy fighter planes attacked his bomber, leaving his plane crippled. Eight crewmembers had been wounded, and the co-pilot killed. An engine was on fire, the controls had been shot out, and 1st. Lt. Lawley was wounded in his face.
He forced the co-pilot's body off the controls and brought the plane out of a steep dive with only his left hand. Blood covered the windshield and all the instruments. Lawley gave the order to bail, but two crewmembers had been too severely wounded to evacuate. First Lieutenant Lawley vowed to remain with these men.
As the enemy fighters resumed attacks, Lawley managed to evade them, even extinguishing an engine fire. 1st. Lt. Lawley refused care and continued flying until he lost so much blood he collapsed. He was revived by his bombardier and once again, took over the controls. As he flew over the English coast, an engine ran out of gas. First Lieutenant Lawley was able to perform a crash lander on a fighter base. His actions saved his men and resulted in 1st. Lt. Lawley receiving the Medal of Honor.
[Image Descriptions: 1. 1st. Lt. Lawley's Air Corps photograph with a photo of his plane wreckage in the background (USAF) 2. 1st. Lt. Lawley (Back Left) and his B-17 crew. (Left to Right) Front row: Sgt. Alfred Wendt (tail gunner), TSgt. Joseph Kobierecki (turret gunner), Sgt. Ralph Braswell (waist gunner), Sgt. Spears, SSgt. Carrol Rowley (turret gunner), SSgt Thomas Dempsey (radio operator). Back row: 1st. Lt. Lawley (commander), Lt. Paul Murphy (co-pilot), Lt. Harry Seraphine (navigator), and Lt. Harry Mason (bombardier) (Home of the Heroes).]

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