Editor’s note: This Veterans Day Voice of OC is publishing a series of plaques honoring some of Orange County’s most decorated veterans. Kenneth Walsh was born in Brooklyn, NY on November 24, 1916. He also was the recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross and 5 Gold Stars. He resided in Santa Ana, California and died on July 30, 1998.
The President of the United States of America, authorized by
Act of Congress, 3 March 1863, has awarded the Medal of Honor to
1st Lieutenant Kenneth A. Walsh
United States Marine Corps
Citations: For extraordinary heroism above and beyond the call of duty in Marine Fighter Squadron 124 in aerial combat against Japanese forces in the Solomon Islands, on August 15, 1943, while attempting to stop an attack on Allied Ground Forces and shipping at Vella Lavella, 1st Lt. Walsh repeatedly dived his plane into an enemy formation outnumbering his own unit six to one, 1st Lt. Walsh shot down three Japanese planes.
On August 30 during an escort mission, 1st Lt. Walsh landed his disabled plane at Munda, replaced it with another and rejoined his flight over Mandale separated from his Escort Group, his encountered 50 Japanese Zeros, he attacked with relentless fury. He destroyed 4 enemy fighters before shellfire forced him to make a dead stick landing of the coast of Vella Lavella.
His valiant leadership and his skill as a flyer has been a source of inspiration to his fellow pilots and reflect the credit upon the United States Naval Service.
Orange County Walk of Honor by AMVETS
More about Kenneth Walsh:
- FReeper Canteen ~ Hall of the Heroes: Kenneth Walsh ~ March 3, 2008
- Voice of OC to Publish Series on Veterans Memorial Plaques