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Maj. Gen. Leonard Wood

Date of Award: April 8, 1898
Conflict: Indian Wars
Branch: U.S. Army

Maj. Gen. Leonard Wood portraitMaj. Gen. Leonard Wood played a vital role in transforming the U.S. Army into a formidable modern force. A graduate of Harvard Medical School, he followed his sense of adventure and joined the Army as a physician, participating in the last campaign against Geronimo in his first year, for which he was awarded the nation’s highest honor.
Along with this service, and his tenure as President McKinley’s personal physician, Wood commanded the 1st Volunteer Calvary during the Spanish-American War, where Theodore Roosevelt served as his second-in-command. Wood’s “Rough Riders” came to be widely known, especially for their victory in the infamous Battle of San Juan Hill.

Citation: “Voluntarily carried dispatches through a region infested with hostile Indians, making a journey of 70 miles in one night and walking 30 miles the next day. Also for several weeks, while in close pursuit of Geronimo's band and constantly expecting an encounter, commanded a detachment of Infantry, which was then without an officer, and to the command of which he was assigned upon his own request.”

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