Sgt. John D. “Bud” Hawk
1924 - 2013. The movie, “America’s Hometown Hero” is a documentary made for one of the greatest Metal of Honor World War II soldiers: “Bud” Hawk, called “The Tank Destroyer”. Joining the Army out of high school, he was shipped to France just after the D-Day invasion. His valor is also recorded in the book, “Medal of Honor: Portraits of Valor Beyond the Call of Duty”. On August 20,1944, he was manning a machine gun at a critical point in the encirclement of Germans at Normandy. Coming under direct attack, he kept firing although shot in the leg, and pulled a small squad up a hill. Standing before enemy fire with two German tanks moving in with guns aimed at him, he directed his men to fire endlessly until the Germans surrendered and the tanks were taken out. He treated his wounds and went with his men to fight at the Battle of the Bulge where his efforts and injuries won him the Purple Heart. In 1945, President Harry S. Truman awarded him the Medal of Honor and this is an amazingly scarce official signed photo by Sgt. John D. “Bud” Hawk, USA" of the moment the award was put around his neck. The same photo is displayed in the Harry S. Truman Library.