b. 04/08/1887 Oneonta, Alabama. d. 15/10/1917 at sea off Monagoush, County Waterford, Ireland.
DATE OF ACTION: 15/10/1917 at sea off Monagoush, County Waterford, Ireland.
Osmond Kelly Ingram was born on 4 August 1887 in Oneonta, Alabama. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy from that state as an Apprentice Seaman in November 1903. In the course of his Naval career, he advanced to the rank of Gunner’s Mate First Class and, during World War I, served on board the destroyer U.S.S. Cassin.
On 15 October 1917, while his ship was operating off the Irish coast, she was attacked by the German submarine U-61. Gunner’s Mate Ingram spotted an incoming torpedo and, realizing that it could hit near the depth charges at the ship’s stern, he ran aft in an attempt to release them before the torpedo arrived. However, the torpedo struck the ship before he could achieve his purpose. Ingram was killed in the ensuing explosion. For his “extraordinary heroism” on this occasion, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. Also noteworthy for being the first U.S. Navy enlisted man killed in action during World War I, Osmond K. Ingram is listed on the Wall of the Missing at the American Battle Monuments Commission Cemetery located in Brookwood, Surrey, England. U.S.S. Osmond Ingram (DD-255, later AVD-9 and APD-35), 1919-1946, was named in honor of Gunner’s Mate First Class Osmond K. Ingram.
For extraordinary heroism in the presence of the enemy on the occasion of the torpedoing of the Cassin, 15 October 1917. While the Cassin was searching for the submarine, Ingram sighted the torpedo coming, and realizing that it might strike the ship aft in the vicinity of the depth charges, ran aft with the intention of releasing the depth charges before the torpedo could reach the Cassin. The torpedo struck the ship before he could accomplish his purpose, and Ingram was killed by the explosion. The depth charges exploded immediately afterward. His life was sacrificed in an attempt to save the ship and his shipmates, as the damage to the ship would have been much less if he had been able to release the depth charges.
BURIAL LOCATION: LOST AT SEA
NAMED ON THE TABLETS OF THE MISSING, AMERICAN CEMETERY, BROOKWOOD, SURREY, ENGLAND.
IN MEMORY OF MARKER AT OAK HILL CEMETERY, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: BIRMINGHAM MUSEUM OF ART, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA.