CHARLES FRANK PENDLETON (1931 ~ 1953). Medal of Honor Recipient Charles F. Pendleton was born on September 26, 1931, in Camden, Tennessee, and grew up in Fort Worth, Texas. He graduated from Paschal High School in 1949.
Pendleton joined the Army at Fort Worth. He was assigned as a Corporal to Company D, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division as a machine gunner, and deployed to Korea.
On July 16 and 17, 1953, Pendleton's unit defended a strategically important hill near Choo Gung-Dong. A large enemy force attacked a nearby position and Pendleton opened fire on the enemy advance with his machine gun. He killed 15 enemy soldiers and further disorganized their advance by throwing grenades. Pendleton was stationed in a narrow trench which prevented him from protecting his flanks. Pendleton left the trench and fought in the open with a machine gun mounted on his knee. An enemy soldier attacked the trench behind Pendleton with a grenade, but was stopped when Pendleton shot him with his machine gun. The enemy withdrew and reorganized, and then attacked a second time. During the charge a live grenade landed near Pendleton, who picked it up and threw it back towards the enemy. Pendleton was wounded by an exploding grenade and was burned by his overheated machine gun; however, he refused medical treatment. Another enemy grenade destroyed his machine gun and Pendleton used a rifle to continue fighting until he was killed by enemy mortar fire.
Pendleton was cited for his courageous defense of his position and fellow soldiers, and was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. His widow received the Medal of Honor and donated it to Paschal High School, where it remains on display. Pendleton is buried in Laurel Land Memorial Park in Fort Worth.
Biography: "Above and Beyond: The Medal of Honor in Texas," Capitol Visitors Center, State Preservation Board of Texas. The Handbook of Texas Online, Texas State Historical Association, University of Texas, http://www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/PP/fpebr.html, April 26, 2006. Paschal High School Website, Alumni Hall of Fame, http://www.paschalhs.org/alum/alum%20hall.htm, July 12, 2006.