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Douglas Albert Munro

Douglas Albert Munro

Coast guard medal of honor recipient

Douglas Albert Munro (October 11, 1919 – September 27, 1942) was a United States Coast Guardsman who was posthumously decorated with the Medal of Honor for an act of "extraordinary heroism" during World War II. He is the only person to have received the medal for actions performed during service in the Coast Guard.

Munro was born in Canada to an American father and a British mother, and his family moved to the United States when he was a child. He was raised in South Cle Elum, Washington, and attended Central Washington College of Education before volunteering for military service shortly before the United States entered World War II. Munro and his shipmate Raymond Evans were known as the Gold Dust Twins, so-called because they were inseparable.

During the Guadalcanal Campaign, Munro was assigned to Naval Operating Base Cactus at Lunga Point, where small boat operations were coordinated. At the Second Battle of the Matanikau in September 1942, he led the extrication of a force of Marines whose position had been overrun by Japanese forces. He died of a gunshot wound at age 22 while using the Higgins boat that he was piloting to shield a landing craft filled with Marines from Japanese fire.

Several ships, buildings, and monuments have been dedicated to Munro, and a street in his hometown is named after him in his honor. The anniversary of his death is annually observed in Cle Elum and at Coast Guard Training Center Cape May. His grave has been designated a historical site by Washington state. He is the namesake of the Douglas A. Munro Coast Guard Headquarters Building, the "Douglas Munro March", the Navy League's Douglas A. Munro Award, the Coast Guard Foundation's Douglas Munro Scholarship Fund, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars' Douglas Munro–Robert H. Brooks Post. He is the only non-Marine to have his name enshrined on the Wall of Heroes of the National Museum of the Marine Corps.

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October 11, 1919
Douglas Albert Munro was born in Vancouver.

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