Coast Guard Medal of Honor recipient remembered

SEATTLE – The only Coast Guard recipient of the Medal of Honor, Petty Officer 1st Class Douglas Munro was honored Friday, in observance of the first Douglas Munro Memorial Day during a ceremony held at the Medal of Honor memorial in Olympia, Wash.

On July 2, 2009, Governor Christine O. Gregoire signed into effect the proclamation that July 24, will be observed as Douglas Munro Memorial Day. Douglas Munro, who was from Cle Elum, Wash., is the only Coast Guard recipient of the Medal of Honor for his heroism in giving his life for others during the Battle of Guadalcanal.

In the ceremony First Gentleman Mike Gregoire, husband of Washington State Governor, read the proclamation making July 24, 2009, Douglas Munro Memorial Day.

The proclamation reads as follows:

WHEREAS, during World War II, in the fall of 1942, the situation was extremely difficult in the Pacific Theater; and

WHEREAS, three companies of the 7 th Marines were assigned to attack a location west of Point Cruz on Guadalcanal, and Coast Guard Signalman First Class Douglas Munro of South Cle Elum, Washington, was assigned to get the Marines ashore; and

WHEREAS, the marines were driven back by enemy forces and had to evacuate while taking heavy casualties; and

WHEREAS, despite intense fire from the hills, Munro maneuvered his landing craft between the enemy and the evacuating Marines, shielding them as they made their escape, rescuing many in the process; and

WHEREAS, Munro was shot and killed by enemy fire while carrying out this heroic act; and

WHEREAS, because of his extraordinary heroism, Douglas Munro was awarded the Medal of Honor, the first ever given to a member of the Coast Guard; and

WHEREAS, in July 2009, the Clan Munro USA will meet in Olympia, Washington, and place a wreath at the Medal of Honor monument on the Washington State Capital Campus;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Christine O. Gregoire, Governor of the state of Washington, do hereby proclaim July 24, 2009, as

Douglas Munro Memorial Day

In Washington State, and I urge all citizens to join me in this special observance.

Signed this 2nd day of July, 2009

Governor Christine O. Gregoire

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