A Medal of Honor recipient recognized for courageous actions during the Korean War has died. Retired Master Chief Hospital Corpsman William Charette died on Sunday, March 18, in Lake Wales, Florida at the age of 79.
Charette enlisted in the Navy in 1951. He joined Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines, and was deployed to Korea in February 1953.
On March 27, 1953, the Military Times Hall of Valor shared that Charette through his body on top of a patient during a grenade attack on Marine outpost Vegas, absorbing the effects of the blast with his own body.
Charette was also known to have removed his battle vest in favor of a patient; torn parts of his uniform to dress battle wounds; and stood up in a trench, braving gunfire, to attend to a patient.
Retired Master Chief Hospital Corpsman William Charette was presented with the Medal of Honor by then President Dwight D. Eisenhower in Washington D.C. on January 12, 1954. He is one of five enlisted Sailors who were awarded the Medal of Honor, the highest military medal for valor awarded to members of the military, for courageous actions while serving in the Korean War. He was the only remaining living recipient of the five.
Charette was also honored in 1958, having been chosen as the representative of the Veterans of the Korean War in the selection of World War II remains to be placed in the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery.