Craw -- Col Demas T. Craw

  • By

 

Demas T. Craw was born in Long Lake Township Michigan,  served briefly in World War 1, was discharged and then entered the U.S. Military Academy in 1920.

He applied for pilot training with the Air Service in 1926 and joined the 1st Pursuit Group at Selfridge Field, Michigan.  He transferred his commission to the Air Corps on March 21, 1928, and was promoted to first lieutenant on January 3, 1930.

In October, 1942,  Colonel Craw was named air officer for Maj. General Lucian K. Truscott, commanding one of the sub-task forces, Force Goalpost, of Operation Torch, an amphibious invasion of North Africa. He sailed with the invasion force from Virginia and while en route, volunteered to assist another Army Air Forces officer, Maj. Pierpont M. Hamilton, Truscott's intelligence officer, in delivering a message to the local French commander near Port Lyautey, French Morocco, to broker a cease fire, should French forces resist.

Craw and Maj. Pierpont M. Hamilton were the first Army Air Forces recipients of the Medal in the European-Mediterranean theater of World War II and the only AAF members to be awarded that decoration for valor not involving air combat.

See the
full citation at the Congressional Medal of Honor Society website.