The day Lt. Mushik was awarded the DSC

2/6/15. December 27, 1943, was a proud day for the 169th Field Artillery Battalion when one of its own, Lt. Donald L. Mushik of Mandan, SD, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his heroic performance as a forward observer during the battle for Munda Airfield in the Solomon Islands. The presentation by General Barker, the parade in review, and a band concert were all photographed by the battalion doctor, Charles D’Avanzo, as was a gathering of the battalion officers in front of the battalion chapel. It was a festive time all around for these officers and their men who had been through three months (July–September, 1943) of intense jungle combat in the captures of Munda Airfield, Baanga Island, and Arundel Island. The battalion was at that time recuperating on nearby Ondonga Island. My sister Valerie as a young girl circled her daddy Wilber’s face with a crayon on this print. Mushik is two places to the left of Wilber, wearing his medal.

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