Kilgore's gravestone in Normandy American Cemetery

Thomas Kilgore died June 20, 1944 at the rank of Private. He was 24 years of age. The awards Kilgore was posthumously awarded are as follows:

Bronze Star- The ninth highest award in the U.S. Military. Can be awarded for acts of merit, heroism, or meritorious service in a combat zone. When awarded for heroism, there is a "V" device attached.

Purple Heart- The 10th highest award in the U.S. Military. Awarded for those wounded or killed in action by enemy action. These are typically inscribed on the back with the soldier's first and last name and the words "For Military Merit".


Thomas Kilgore served his county with extreme bravery first in his decision to enlist, and then in his decision to continue serve when he knew his death was very probable. Kilgore's time in the Army brought him overseas to Montebourg, France where he was killed in action. He was a son, and a husband whose life was lost far too early. We will never know the specifics of Kilgore's death, but his Bronze star and Purple Heart demonstrate his courageousness. He left behind his wife, mother, his father, who died in 1945, and his two siblings. 

Normandy American Cemetery is found in Colleville-sur-MerNormandyFrance, and is on the former site of temporary battlefield cemetery of Saint Laurent. Kilgore was laid to rest in Plot 4, Row 1, Grave 42 in Normandy American Cemetery. Approximately 9,388 soldiers are buried there, and the cemetery covers 172.5 acres. The cemetery overlooks Omaha Beach, one of the landing beaches for Operation Overlook, the official name for the D-Day invasion.

The temporary cemetery of Saint Laurent one day after D-Day.

Thomas's name pictured on the list of casualties

Elena Rasmussen

Carlisle High School, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Mr. Wagner