Daniel Joseph Daly, was born 11 November 1873, at Glen Cove, Long Island, New York.  Sergeant Major Daly served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1899 to 1929.  He saw service in the following campaigns and theaters of operation: Philippines – China – Mexican War – Haiti – WW1

In mid-1900, a Chinese peasant uprising, the Boxer Rebellion, threatened the safety of foreigners in China. Although Marines found themselves embroiled in a pitched battle in Tientsin, it was events in Peking that captured the world's attention.

In Peking, the city's foreign citizens crowded into a small compound defended by forces from six countries. Tasked with defending a section of the compound, the Marines participated in what became known as "55 Days in Peking."

It was during the defense of the legation that a young private began his accession to legendary status within the Corps. Pvt. Daniel J. Daly single-handedly held his sentry post against wave after wave of Chinese attackers until reinforcements arrived. For his bravery in Peking, Daly was awarded the first of two Medals of Honor.

With the legation compound secured, the Marines evacuated. They returned in 1905. Service in Shanghai followed sporadically until 1927, when the 4th Marine Regiment became a permanent part of the city.

At Belleau Wood.  Robert B. Asprey. NY: G.P. Putnam & Sons, 1965  Includes the source for the famous quotation by Gunnery Sergeant Dan Daly: “Come on you sons of bitches.  Do you want to live forever?” (pp. 173, 174). 



Depicted Ribbon Array – Top to bottom, Left to right

 Medal of Honor* (Haiti - 1915)

Medal of Honor* (Boxer Rebellion, Peking - 1900)

Navy Cross

Army Distinguished Service Cross

Silver Star

Purple Heart w/ Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster #

Marine Corps Good Conduct w/ Two 3/16 Bronze Stars ##

Marine Corps Expedition Medal w/ 3/16 Bronze Star ##

Philippine Campaign Medal 1899-1913

China Relief Service Medal 1900-01

Mexican Service Medal 1911-17

Haitian Campaign Medal 1915  & 1919-20

WW1 Victory Medal 1917-18 w/ four 3/16 Bronze Stars ##

Army of Occupation Medal 1918-23


# Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster – 2nd and subsequent entitlement of certain awards.

## Battle participation on campaign medals. Subsequent Award on others. 

French Medals (not depicted)

Croix de Guerre’ w/ Palm* (The War Cross)

Medaille de la Victoire (Victory Medal)

Medaille Militaire (Military Medal)


* For subsequent acts of bravery, the recipient was awarded a palm leaf
for Army citations.



* The President of the United States

In the name of The Congress

takes pleasure in presenting the

Medal of Honor


Daniel Joseph Daly


In the presence of the enemy during the battle of Peking, China, 14 August 1900, Daly distinguished himself by meritorious conduct.

 /s/ William McKinley



* The President of the United States

in the name of The Congress

takes great pleasure in presenting the

Medal of Honor


Daniel Joseph Daly


Serving with the Fifteenth Company of Marines on 22 October 1915, Gunnery Sergeant Daly was one of the company to leave Fort Liberte, Haiti, for a 6-day reconnaissance.  After dark on the evening of 24 October, while crossing the river in a deep ravine, the detachment was suddenly fired upon from three sides by about 400 Cacos concealed in bushes about 100 yards from the fort.  The Marine detachment fought its way forward to a good position, which it maintained during the night, although subjected to a continuous fire from the Cacos.  At daybreak the Marines, in three squads, advanced in three different directions, surprising and scattering the Cacos in all directions.  Gunnery Sergeant Daly fought with exceptional gallantry against heavy odds throughout this action.

 /s/ Woodrow Wilson

For a more complete history of the incident see the following link.



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