Douglas Albert Munro is the only Coast Guardsman to be ever awarded the highest honor bestowed by the United States of America. Munro was killed in action at Guadalcanal on September 27, 1942.
On November 23, 1942, just two months after his death, his mother, Edith, became one of the nation’s
first women to volunteer for the newly created SPAR’s, which was the Women’s Reserve of the Coast Guard.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt awarded the Medal of Honor to Munro’s parents at a White House ceremony.
We generally only write about the Coast Guard’s history of serving our nation’s lighthouses and unfortunately, many people today are unaware of the vital role of the United States Coast Guard played in World War II. We encourage our readers to learn more about the Coast Guard’s history through the many books that are available on the subject and through various Internet websites. In fact, we would also encourage teachers of our nation’s schools to encourage students to research the Coast Guard’s history for some type of school project, such as a book report or history paper. However, while doing that, don’t forget, it is also just as important to remember the larger wide-varied duties that today’s United States Coast Guard has in the protection of our nation.
This story appeared in the
May 2006 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.
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