The namesake of the ship.

  Lt. Col. Aquilla James "Jimmie" "Big Red" DYESS, USMC
   



 

DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY

NAVAL AND MARINE CORPS

RESERVE CENTER

2869 CENTRAL AVENUE

AUGUSTA, GEORGIA 30909-3904

(706)-733-2249/0

(706)-733-2695 (fax)

IN REPLY REFER TO

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

POC: LCDR John Croce

Augusta Honors Local Hero Augusta, GA. - The Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center in Augusta was dedicated to the memory of Lt. Col. A. James Dyess, USMCR, in ceremonies on October 30, 1998. Lt. Col. Dyess, an Augusta native, is the only American to have received both the Carnegie Medal for civilian heroism and the Medal of Honor.

The ceremony was conducted under a clear and bright autumn sky with a crowd of over 200 in attendance. Principal speakers for the event were Georgia Congressman Charlie Norwood, LTGEN John E. Rhodes, Commanding General, Marine Corps Combat Development Command, Quantico VA represented the Commandant of the Marine Corps, and MAJGEN Perry M. Smith, USAF, retired. General Smith is best known for his work as CNN's military analyst during the Gulf War. He is the son-in-law of Lt. Col. Dyess and has been instrumental in having Lt. Col. Dyess appropriately remembered and honored in his hometown. General Smith has just published a book, A Hero Among Heroes: Jimmie Dyess and the 4th Marine Division that tells the Dyess story. Elements of the Marine Forces Reserve Band, New Orleans, LA, provided music for the dedications ceremony, which included the rendering of traditional navy honors for the speakers. General Ray Davis, USMC retired, and a Medal of Honor recipient attended the ceremony and was joined by former crewmembers of the USS Dyess (DD880) and members of the 4th Marine Division in which Dyess served. Mr. Pokrop, rescued by Dyess during the battle for the Marshall Islands was present as well.

As a young man in 1928, Dyess won the Carnegie Medal for Heroism by saving the lives of two drowning swimmers off Sullivan's Island, Charleston, S.C. In 1944, as a battalion commander with the 4th Marine Division, he went behind enemy lines to save the lives of four wounded Marines. The next day he was killed in action in the battle for Roi Namur in the Marshall Islands. He was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, the nation's highest award for conspicuous bravery in action. It is most appropriate that Augusta's Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center should be named for an Augusta Marine who left his home to answer his nation's call to service and distinguish himself as a combat leader. His courage and compassion will inspire future men and women who join the reserve force with its long tradition of "twice a citizen."

- LCDR Robert Fain, USNR CHC

Encl: Photos

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