• Members of the Whittington family " (left to right) Teri Jones, Roxanne Jones, Lisa Humberger and Scott Whittington unveil the plaque May 17 dedicating the U.S. Army Ordnance School's parade field in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B. Whittington. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

    Members of the Whittington family " (left to...

    Members of the Whittington family " (left to right) Teri Jones, Roxanne Jones, Lisa Humberger and Scott Whittington unveil the plaque May 17 dedicating the U.S. Army Ordnance School's parade field in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B...

  • Col. Greg A. Mason, U.S. Army Ordnance School commandant, (center), cuts the ceremonial ribbon May 17 officially dedicating the Ordnance School's parade field in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B. Whittington. Mason is joined by Whittington family members, keynote speaker Dr. William F. Atwater, Chief Warrant Officer 5 Terry Hetrick, U.S. Army OD School regimental warrant officer, Command Sgt. Maj. Sultan A. Muhammad, U.S. Army OD School regimental command sergeant major, Gayle Olszyk, former deputy to the Ordnance School commandant, Col. Rodney D. Edge, U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Lee commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. June E. Seay, U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Lee command sergeant major. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

    Honoring a hero

    Col. Greg A. Mason, U.S. Army Ordnance School commandant, (center), cuts the ceremonial ribbon May 17 officially dedicating the Ordnance School's parade field in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B. Whittington. Mason is joined by...

  • As part of the 200th anniversary celebration of the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps, the parade field on the school's campus was dedicated May 17 in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B. Whittington. Col. Greg A. Mason, U.S. Army Ordnance School commandant, addresses the audience to explain the important role of ordnance Soldiers and the vital support they provide to the military. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

    Enduring legacy

    As part of the 200th anniversary celebration of the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps, the parade field on the school's campus was dedicated May 17 in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Maj. Hulon B. Whittington. Col. Greg A. Mason, U.S. Army Ordnance School...

  • Dr. William F. Atwater, who served as the U.S. Army Ordnance Museum director for 18 years, provided the keynote address during the dedication ceremony for the Maj. Hulon B. Whittington parade field May 17. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

    Dr. William F. Atwater, who served as the U.S...

    Dr. William F. Atwater, who served as the U.S. Army Ordnance Museum director for 18 years, provided the keynote address during the dedication ceremony for the Maj. Hulon B. Whittington parade field May 17. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

  • Victoria Huggins, North Carolina Teen Grand Majestic Queen, sang the national anthem during the Maj. Hulon B. Whittington parade field dedication May 17. Huggins' father is an ordnance senior noncommissioned officer in the National Guard. (U.S. Army photo by H.S. Block)

    Victoria Huggins, North Carolina Teen Grand...

    Victoria Huggins, North Carolina Teen Grand Majestic Queen, sang the national anthem during the Maj. Hulon B. Whittington parade field dedication May 17. Huggins' father is an ordnance senior noncommissioned officer in the National Guard. (U.S. Army...

FORT LEE, Va. -- A Medal of Honor recipient was honored May 17 as part of the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps' 200th anniversary celebration.

A large crowd turned out to view the U.S. Army Ordnance School's parade field dedication ceremony here in honor of Maj. Hulon B. Whittington, who was awarded the Medal of Honor for actions that occurred on July 29, 1944, while attached to the 41st Armored Infantry, 2nd Armored Division, near Grimesnil, France.

This field will serve as a lasting tribute to this ordnance officer, said Col. Greg A. Mason, U.S. Army Ordnance School commandant. "Every Soldier who stands on this field will be reminded of his example of selfless service and dedication to duty."

The Ordnance School, which is part of the Combined Arms Support Command, instructs almost 30,000 students a year in 288 courses, which support training for 34 enlisted military occupational specialties, nine warrant officer and two officer areas of concentration.

During the keynote address, Dr. William F. Atwater, who served as the U.S. Army Ordnance Museum director for 18 years, described Whittington as a real American hero.

"I never had the honor to meet him, but I wish I had," he said. "That way, I could have said I met a man who embodied all of the Army values…. If he were here, I would say thank you for your service, deeds and the example you have set.

"What should we take away? I suggest we all should take away his example of values," Atwater said as he spoke about how Whittington's values helped him make decisions and defined who he was as a person and Soldier.

Atwater went on to explain the criteria for being awarded the Medal of Honor and how Whittington's actions were great examples of the high standards required for that award. He said that the ordnance Soldier was more than the embodiment of the Army's core values; he was a hero.


Lasting tribute --

Maj. Hulon Brock Whittington was born in Bogalusa, La., on July 9, 1921. He enlisted in the Army in August 1940. He participated in the invasions of North Africa and Sicily and was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, the French Croix de Guerre and the Belgian Fouraguerre for heroism in Sicily and in France during 26 months of combat.

On July 29, 1944, a strong enemy attack began around midnight and overtook some small American outposts. Whittington reorganized the defense and, under fire, courageously crawled between gun positions to check the actions of his men. When the advancing enemy attempted to penetrate a road block he organized, he disregarded intense enemy action, mounted a tank and by shouting through the turret, directed it into position to fire point blank at the lead Mark V German tank. The destruction of this vehicle blocked all movement of the remaining enemy column, consisting of more than 100 vehicles of a Panzer unit. The blocked vehicles were then destroyed by hand grenades, bazooka, tank and artillery fire and large numbers of enemy personnel were defeated. When the medical Soldier became a casualty, Whittington personally administered first aid to his wounded men.

After the war, he was commissioned a first lieutenant of infantry in August 1949 and, in November 1951, was assigned to the Ordnance Officer Candidate School at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. In April 1953, he was assigned to the Ordnance School and in September of that year transferred from infantry to ordnance. Promoted to captain in October 1953, he remained at the Ordnance School until December 1954. Later assignments included tours in the pacific, at the Erie Ordnance Depot in Ohio and in europe. After promotion to major in September 1960, he went to Vietnam as a senior volunteer ordnance advisor to the Republic of Vietnam Army's 2nd. In Vietnam, he suffered a heart attack and retired from the Army in March 1963. Whittington died in Toledo, Ohio, on Jan. 17, 1969, at the age of 47.

Page last updated Mon May 21st, 2012 at 00:00