Official Website of the U.S. Marine Raider Association & Foundation

Select Page

Obituaries > RED CLOUD, MITCHELL, JR.

Hatfield, Wis.—(UP)—Cpl. Mitchell Red Cloud, Congressional Medal of Honor winner, was laid to rest today in an ancient Indian funeral ceremony.

Red Cloud, who served in the Marine Corps in World War II, was killed on a ridge near Chonghyon, Korea, on Nov. 5, 1950, while holding back the enemy while his Army company could take cover.

He was posthumously awarded his country’s highest military honor, the eighth man to win it during the Korean War.

Services were held in the Evangelical Reform Indian Mission Church near this Jackson County town at 2 p.m. Burial was in the nearby Decorah Cemetery. The Rev. Mitchell Whiterabbit conducted the church services and the Indian services followed.

A tribute Sen. Alexander Wiley (R-Wis.) put in the Congressional record Tuesday was read at the funeral. It said the sacrifice Red Cloud made “is too great and too long lasting for myself or any other man to attempt to praise.”

Earlier this week, Reverend Whiterabbit, pastor of the Mission Church, received a telegram from President Eisenhower which said Red Cloud’s “heroism has reflected lasting honor on the country which he loved and for which he gave his life.”

An honor guard of Winnebago Indian veterans fired a salute to their fallen comrade.

The casket was brought to the Mission Church from the Langlois-Galston Funeral Home in Black River Falls where the warrior’s body had laid in state.

Red Cloud’s body was met at Black River Falls by his mother, Mrs. Nellie Red Cloud, about 60, when it arrived from Oakland, Calif., Wednesday. A military procession took the body to the funeral home. There were two flags: the Stars and Stripes and that of the Winnebago Veterans’ Association which bears the words, “Winnebago Veterans–First Americans.”

Red Cloud was buried in North Korea. The body was returned after negotiations between the North Koreans and the United Nations. He was 26 when he died.

The Medal of Honor was given the hero’s mother by Gen. Omar Bradley in a ceremony at the Pentagon in Washington in 1951.

Although some have said Mrs. Red Cloud brushed away a tear at the ceremony, she said later that Indians don’t cry but hide their grief.

Red Cloud was born on his family’s farm near here and attended Black River Falls High School where a bronze plaque now hangs in his honor. He was one of Carlson’s Raider in the 1st Marine Division in World War II. In 1948 he joined the Army.

His father, a veteran of World War I, was turned down when he tried to enlist in the Marines after his son. He died in 1946.

One brother died during Army maneuvers in 1949. Mrs. Red Cloud lives with her only surviving son, Merlin, near Brockway.

Forbearers of Red Cloud fought I the Spanish-American War, the Civil War and the Revolutionary War, according to James Smoke, Tomah, of the Winnebago Veterans.

Smoke said Chief Adam Thundercloud, from Mrs. Red Cloud’s side of the family, has a Silver Medal which was presented to one of his ancestors by George Washington in 1789.