b. 14/12/1922 Berlin, Germany. d. 04/01/1945 Flamierge, Belgium.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 04/01/1945 Flamierge, Belgium.
Jachman was born on December 14, 1922, in Berlin. His parents immigrated to Baltimore when he was 2 and expanded their family further, having another boy and a girl. Jachman graduated from Baltimore City College High School in 1939. He spent a year studying Physical Education at the University of Baltimore before the United States’ entrance into World War II changed the trajectory of his life. In November 1942, he paused his studies and volunteered for the Army.
As a German Jew, Jachman still had plenty of family in Europe, so there was no question where his loyalties lay — with his adopted home, not with the Nazi party that had taken over his native country. According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, at least six of Jachman’s aunts and uncles were killed during the Holocaust.
After basic training, Jachman was posted stateside, but he eventually volunteered to serve as a paratrooper so he could fight the Nazis. After the appropriate training, he was sent to Europe to fight with the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 17th Airborne Division.
Jachman’s unit was part of the massive force fighting back the Nazis during the Battle of the Bulge over the frigid winter of 1944-1945. If it hadn’t been for his bravery toward the end of that long and bloody battle, his company might have been completely wiped out.
On January 4, 1945, Jachman was with Company B in Flamierge, Belgium, when they were suddenly pinned down by heavy fire, including artillery, mortar and a barrage of fire from two enemy tanks that quickly inflicted casualties on his unit. Jachman saw his comrades were in desperate need of something that would help them. Instead of staying where he had taken cover, he jumped up and ran across open ground, despite the gunfire. He grabbed a bazooka from a fallen soldier and moved toward the tanks, which had begun concentrating their fire on him.
Jachman managed to fire the bazooka, damaging one of the armored vehicles before both tanks turned away from the fight. His bold move disrupted the enemy’s attack, which saved Company B from complete decimation. Unfortunately, Jachman was fatally wounded during the attack. He was 22 years old.
According to the Texas Jewish Post, Jachman was initially awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, which was later upgraded to the Medal of Honor. In June 1950, it was presented to his parents by Army Lt. Gen. Leonard Gerow, the commander of the 2nd Army, during a ceremony at Fort Meade, Maryland. Jachman was buried at Adath Israel Anshe SFard Cemetery outside of Baltimore.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty at Flamierge, Belgium on 4 January 1945, when his company was pinned down by enemy artillery, mortar, and small-arms fire, two hostile tanks attacked the unit, inflicting heavy casualties. S/Sgt. Jachman, seeing the desperate plight of his comrades, left his place of cover and with total disregard for his own safety dashed across open ground through a hail of fire and, seizing a bazooka from a fallen comrade, advanced on the tanks, which concentrated their fire on him. Firing the weapon alone, he damaged one and forced both to retire. S/Sgt. Jachman’s heroic action, in which he suffered fatal wounds, disrupted the entire enemy attack, reflecting the highest credit upon himself and the parachute infantry.
BURIAL LOCATION: ADATH ISRAEL ANSHE SFARD CEMETERY, BALTIMORE, MARYLAND.
BACK SECTION, LARGE HEADSTONE.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AMERICAN JEWISH MILITARY HISTORY, WASHINGTON DC.