PERSONALIA
 
Name:  Ruhsam, John W. "Gruesome"
Date of birth: September 7th, 1922 (Albert Lea/Minnesota, United States)
Date of death:  June 27th, 2009 (Hillsborough County, Florida, United States)
Nationality:  American
     
NAVY CROSS
Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
Unit: Marine Fighter Squadron 323 (VMF-323), Marine Air Group 33 (MAG-33), 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, U.S. Marine Corps
Action: The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to John W. Ruhsam (0-30883), Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve), for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Section Leader and a Pilot in Marine Fighting Squadron Three Hundred Twenty-Three (VMF-323), Marine Air Group Thirty-Three (MAG-33), Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing, in aerial combat against enemy Japanese forces in the vicinity of Ie Shima, Ryukyu Islands, on 4 May 1945. Flying on combat air patrol, Second Lieutenant Ruhsam sighted an enemy bomber-type aircraft disappearing over the horizon and, giving chase with his wingman, encountered a Japanese force of approximately twenty-five suicide dive bombers headed for friendly shipping off Okinawa. Undaunted by the formidable array, he initiated an immediate attack and, alternating with his wingman, made repeated runs on the hostile formation to shoot down four of the enemy craft and damage three others, finally joining his wingman in scattering the remainder. His indomitable fighting spirit, courageous airmanship and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.
Details: SPOT AWARD, Fleet Marine Force, Pacific: Serial 89843.
 
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Information source(s):   - Recipients of The Navy Cross, 1916 - Present, by C. Douglas Sterner
- Craig, B., Marine Corps Aviation Chronolog 1912-1954, Turner Publishing Company, Paducah, Kentucky, USA, 1989
- Homeofheroes.com
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