Oahu, Hawaii, US
PVT, Company A, 100th Infantry Battalion (Separate)
3/12/2008, Honolulu, US
Shizuya Hayashi was a soldier in the 100th Infantry Battalion of the United States Army who received the Medal of Honor for actions in Cerasuolo, Italy during World War II. He distinguished himself by taking over a German position despite superior numbers. Hayashi was originally awarded the Distinguished Service Cross which was upgraded to the Medal of Honor upon military review in June 2001. Since being recognized with the Medal, Hayashi has been a guest speaker at various events including being an honored guest at the United States Army Southern European Task Force.
Medal of Honor citation:
Private Shizuya Hayashi distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in action on 29 November 1943, near Cerasuolo, Italy. During a flank assault on high ground held by the enemy, Private Hayashi rose alone in the face of grenade, rifle, and machine gun fire. Firing his automatic rifle from the hip, he charged and overtook an enemy machine gun position, killing seven men in the nest and two more as they fled. After his platoon advanced 200 yards from this point, an enemy antiaircraft gun opened fire on the men. Private Hayashi returned fire at the hostile position, killing nine of the enemy, taking four prisoners, and forcing the remainder of the force to withdraw from the hill. Private Hayashi’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the United States Army.
Hayashi was drafted in March 1941 and was given the nickname “Cesar” because his sergeant could not pronounce his name.
“I guess Cesar is closest they could get to Shizuya,” Hayashi told the Star-Bulletin before the ceremony. “But my friends still call me Cesar today.”
Yesterday, Senator Daniel Inouye recalled sitting next him at the White House before President Bill Clinton hung the Medal of Honor around their necks.
“It was a humbling experience,” Inouye said, “and it was made more touching and meaningful when I learned that Shizuya also shared my sentiment: that we were accepting this special honor on behalf of the men with whom we served, and especially those who did return home when the war ended.
During the past few years, Hayashi, who lived in Pearl City, would routinely spend part of his day with other veterans tending the gardens and buildings of the Disabled American Veterans facility at Keehi Lagoon.
He is survived by a son and two daughters