May 30, 1971
Audie Murphy, the most decorated combat soldier of World War II, died tragically on this day in a plane crash. He was 46. Audie, one of 9 children, was born on June 20, 1924, near the town of Kingston, Texas. “We were share-crop farmers,” he wrote. “And to say that the family was poor would be an understatement. Poverty dogged our every step.” When he was 18, Audie enlisted in the army. The slight, freckle-faced kid was turned down by the Marines and the paratroopers before the infantry took him. He went on to earn 21 medals for bravery and the Congressional Medal of Honor. He is buried in Arlington Cemetery.