Earl William Elsea was born  on 15 September 1906 at Sale Creek, Hamilton, Tennessee.
Son of Samuel Pink Elsea and Martha Alice Smith
Siblings were sister Nancy L., brothers Claude S. and Samuel H.
He enlisted on the 16th of November 1942 at Fort Oglethorp Georgia.

Private First Class Earl W. Elsea, US Army, was assigned to the 8th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. In November of 1944, the Division was engaged in heavy fighting in the Battle of the Hürtgen Forest in Belgium.
PFC Elsea was killed in action 23 November 1944. He is interred at A,10,12, Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery, Belgium.
Awards include Silver Star, Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster.

The Chattanooga Daily Times, 31 May 1945:
Pfc. Earl W. Elsea, son of Mrs. Alice Elsea, Route 1, Sale Creek, who was killed in action while serving with the Fourth Infantry Division of the Seventh Army in Germany on Nov. 22, 1944, has been posthumously awarded the Silver Star Medal for gallantry in action, it was officially announced yesterday. Pfc. Elsea was decorated for action in the vicinity of Schevenhutte, Germany, where he was killed by an enemy mortar shell after he had killed eleven and wounded seven of the enemy with his rifle. His official citation follows in part: “Pfc. Elsea’s company was enveloped by a vastly superior force of the enemy, estimated to be a battalion and supported by heavy mortar and artillery, but he nevertheless undertook to defend their position until support arrived. An assistant machine gunner, he was one of 36 men defending the objective. Small groups of the enemy, tossing hand grenades and supported by sniper fire, approached his position six times during the first hour of the siege. The attacks failed under the withering fire of Pfc. Elsea’s gun, which claimed 11 enemy killed and seven wounded. *** His heroic defense of this vital position permitted his company to gain precious time to organize the positions back of him, insuring holding of the objective.

  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Date of birth:
  • 15 September 1906
  • Date of death: 23 November 1944
  • County: Hamilton
  • Hometown: Sale Creek
  • Service Branch: Army/Army Air Forces
  • Division/Assignment: 8th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division
  • Theater: Europe
  • Conflict: World War II
  • Battles: Hürtgen Forest
  • Awards: Silver Star, Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster
  • Burial/Memorial Location: Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery, Henri-Chapelle, Belgium
  • Location In Memorial: Pillar XI, Middle Panel
  • Sponsored by: John B. Romeiser

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