David Adam Redford was born in Pawcatuck, Connecticut and moved to Pawtucket, Rhode Island with his family as a youngster. He was a 1913 graduate of Pawtucket High School. He entered Rhode Island State College (RISC) with the class of1917. He was a member of the football team, Rho Iota Kappa fraternity, and served as class treasurer his senior year. He participated in the Army ROTC program serving as Cadet Captain of his battalion in his senior year. He graduated from Rhode Island State College with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering in June 1917.
Rhode Island State College President Howard Edwards recommended David Redford for a commission in the United States Marine Corps; and he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant, USMC in June 1917. When the United States entered World War I on 6 April 1917, there were 562 male students enrolled at Rhode Island State College; 334 left to serve in WW I. David, like so many of his classmates, entered the United States Marine Corps immediately after graduating from RISC in June 1917. He attended the US Marine Corps Officers’ Course at Quantico, Virginia. He deployed to France in September 1917.
1LT Redford was assigned as an infantry platoon leader, 75th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division, United States Marine Corps. The 75th Company went into battle in March 1918, and 1LT Redford received numerous wounds while engaged in combat operations against the enemy. In June 1918, 1LT Redford, without concern for his own safety, advanced to a point within 50 yards of an enemy machine gun emplacement near Chateau Thierry, France. By his utter fearlessness, his unit was able to assist in the capture of the enemy’s stronghold. 1LT Redford was mortally wounded during combat operations on 18 July 1918.
First Lieutenant David Adam Redford was cited for Extraordinary Heroism and Gallantry in Action and recommended for the award of the Distinguished Service Cross and awarded the Citation Star and the French Croix de Guerre Medal (Posthumously).
For “Gallantry in Action,” by direction of the President of the United States, First Lieutenant David Adam Redford, United States Marine Corps is cited by the Commanding General, 2d Marine Division, American Expeditionary Force for Heroism and is awarded the “Citation Star” (Posthumously) and a “Silver Star” to be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him.
The Silver Star Medal was not established until 1932. At that time, Veterans of World War I who had been cited for “Gallantry in Action” were awarded the Silver Star Medal in lieu of the “Citation Star.” The French de Croix Guerre Medal was instituted on 8 April 1915 by the French Government to recognize acts of bravery.
First Lieutenant David Adam Redford was buried with full military honors in the Oise-Aisne American Cemetery, Fere-en-Tardenois, France. He is a American and Rhode Island hero who answered the call to service during World War I.