Presidential Unit Citation
The Sixth Marine Division was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation,
the highest division award possible, for service in the Battle of Okinawa.
This citation is awarded to units of the U. S. Armed Forces, and those of allied countries,
for extraordinary heroism in action against an armed enemy on or after 7 December 1941 when the
United States entered World War II.
The unit must display such gallantry, determination, and esprit de corps in accomplishing its mission
under extremely difficult and hazardous conditions so as to set it apart from and above other units
participating in the same campaign.
The degree of heroism required is the same that which would warrant award of the Distinguished Service Cross,
Air Force Cross or Navy Cross to an individual.
Copies of the Actual Presidential Unit Citation
(Click on documents to view full size, or see below for the text of the Citation.)
Thanks to Mr. Rob Smith, Director of Administrative Computing, Goucher College, for providing these copies.
Text of the Presidential Unit Citation
The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the
PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION to the
SIXTH MARINE DIVISION, REINFORCED
consisting of: The Sixth Marine Division; First Marine War Dog Platoon;
Fifth Provisional Rocket Detachment; Third Platoon, First Bomb Disposal Company;
Marine Observation Squadron Six; Sixth Joint Assault Signal Company;
First Armored Amphibian Battalion; Fourth Amphibian Tractor Battalion;
Ninth Amphibian Tractor Battalion; First Section, Second Platoon,
First Bomb Disposal Company; 708th Amphibian Tank Battalion, U. S. Army;
Third Armored Amphibian Battalion (less four platoons);
91st Chemical Mortar Company (Separate), U. S. Army; First Platoon,
Company B, 713th Armored Flame-Thrower Battalion, U. S. Army,
for service set forth in the following
"For extraordinary heroism in action against enemy Japanese forces during the assault and capture of Okinawa,
April 1 to June 21, 1945. Seizing Yontan Airfield in its initial operation, the SIXTH Marine Division, Reinforced,
smashed through organized resistance to capture Ishikawa Isthmus, the town of Nago and heavily fortified Motobu
Peninsula in 13 days. Later committed to the southern front, units of the Division withstood overwhelming artillery
and mortar barrages, repulsed furious counterattacks and staunchly pushed over the rocky terrain to reduce almost
impregnable defenses and capture Sugar Loaf Hill. Turning southeast, they took the capital city of Naha and executed
surprise shore-to-shore landings on Oroku Peninsula, securing the area with its prized Naha Airfield and Harbor after
nine days of fierce fighting. Reentering the lines in the south, SIXTH Division Marines sought out enemy forces
entrenched in a series of rocky ridges extending to the southern tip of the island, advancing relentlessly and
rendering decisive support until the last remnants of enemy opposition were exterminated and the island secured.
By their valor and tenacity, the officers and men of the SIXTH Marine Division, Reinforced contributed materially
to the conquest of Okinawa, and their gallantry in overcoming a fanatic enemy in the face of extraordinary danger
and difficulty adds new luster to Marine Corps history, and to the traditions of the United States Naval Service."
For the President,
Secretary of the Navy
☆ Medal of Honor Recipients
☆ Other Sixth Division Awards
☆ Awards the Sixth Was Eligible to Receive