Irish Medal of Honor recipients remembered for Memorial Day

The Medal of Honor awarded to those who "conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States."

There have been millions of Irish and Irish-Americans who have served in the US military with distinction. The latest being Col. James Hickey, son of Irish immigrants, a native of Chicago. He commanded the 1st Brigade of the 4th Infantry Division which captured Saddam Hussein in Iraq.

It would be impossible to calculate an exact number of Irish-Americans on the Medal of Honor list. However, Irish surnames are plentiful. There are 21 Murphys, 20 Kellys (or Kelleys), and 8 Sullivans. Names beginning with the Irish prefix “Mc” spill onto multiple pages.

* Originally published May 2014.