Illustration by Art Seiden

Jewish Heroes and Heroines in America

World War II to the Present:


Two Jewish Medal of Honor Recipients in World War II

by Seymour "Sy" Brody

Isadore S. Jachman and his parents came to this country from Berlin when he was two years old. They settled in Baltimore, where he graduated from Baltimore City College. After Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Army.

Sergeant Jachman was a paratrooper who saved his company from annihilation at Flamierge, Belgium. There was a fierce and bitterly fought engagement there on January 4, 1945. Jachman, without regard for his own safety, pushed through the enemy's wall of concentrated fire and single-handedly saved the day.

He received the Congressional Meal of Honor posthumously. The citation reads as follows:

Sergeant Jachman, Company B, 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepiditv above and beyond the call of duty at Flamierge, Belgium, on the fourth day of 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. Sergeant Jachman, seeing the desperate plight of his comrades, left his place of cover, 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, Sergeant Jachman's heroic action, in which he suf- fered fatal wounds, disrupted the entire enemy attack, reflecting the highest credit upon himself and the Parachute Infantry.
Second Lieutenant Raymond Zussman was the other Congressional Medal of Honor recipient in World War 11. He was raised in Detroit and he entered the Army when he was 23 years old. He was killed in France, several days after the engagement that won him the Congressional Medal of Honor. He was 26 years old.

Zussman was a tank officer and it was in a street-fighting battle at the village of Noroy-le-Bourg, in the Rhone Valley, that he displayed his heroism. He was the officer in charge of a tank which became disabled in the field. He took a carbine and on foot proceeded in front of another tank to guide it through the village streets. With his own weapon, while directing the tank's fire as they went through the streets, he killed 19 enemy soldiers, took 93 prisoners and captured two anti-tank guns, a flak gun, two machine guns and two trucks.

Zussman guided the tank through booby traps that were setup by the Germans and directed its fire to destroy the enemy machine gun positions. When his carbine ran out of ammunition, he picked up a Tommy gun to use. Fearing a trap at one intersection, Zussman went in alone to seek out the enemy. When the tank came around the corner of the intersection, he had 30 prisoners and two anti-tank guns that they were using.

Jachman and Zussman, noncommissioned officer and officer, exemplified the bravery and courage of Jewish fighting men in World War II. Their stories of valor are the answer to those who would question the fighting ability and courage of Jews serving in the armed forces of America.

This is one of the 150 illustrated true stories of American heroism included in Jewish Heroes and Heroines of America, © 1996, written by Seymour "Sy" Brody of Delray Beach, Florida, illustrated by Art Seiden of Woodmere, New York, and published by Lifetime Books, Inc., Hollywood, FL.

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