This Soldier Took Out a Pillbox Using only One Small Bomb and a Combat Knife

    His heroic act silenced seven enemy machine guns and captured 25 German troops.

    U.S. Army Pfc. Michael J. Perkins silenced seven enemy machine guns and captured 25 German troops when he rushed a pillbox with just a small bomb and a trench knife in 1918.

    Company D of the 101st Infantry was assaulting German lines in Belieu Bois, France when they came under fire from a pillbox. Fire from seven automatic weapons rained down on them. The American infantrymen maneuvered on the Germans to try and silence the guns.

    Related: Léo Major: The "One-Eyed Ghost" Who Single-Handedly Liberated a Dutch Town 

    Unfortunately, the enemy had expected the American move and began tossing grenades out the door to the fortification, preventing anyone getting too close.

    Perkins was not scared of things like grenades and pillboxes, so he crept up to the bunker with a small bomb and a trench knife.

    Perkins waited by the door until the Germans attempted to throw out another grenade. As soon as the door cracked, he threw his bomb inside. The explosion opened the door permanently, and Perkins rushed inside with his knife.

    The enemy inside were likely dazed by the bomb, but Perkins was still heavily outnumbered. He used the trench knife to kill and wound the first few Germans before accepting the surrender of the 25 survivors.

    Related: Lyudmila Pavlichenko: The Red Army Sniper Who Took Out over 300 German Soldiers During World War II 

    For his heroism, Perkins received the Medal of Honor. Unfortunately it was posthumous. He was wounded in the struggle for the pillbox and sent to the infirmary. En route, he was struck by an enemy artillery shell and killed.

    Created on 17 Aug 2018

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