Rev. Charles J. Watters '45
Medal of Honor Recipient
Rev. Charles J. Watters '45 was a Chaplin (Major) in the United States Army. He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for bravery exhibited while rescuing wounded men in the Vietnam War, specifically, the Battle of Dak To. Chaplin Watters is one of seven chaplains to receive the Medal of Honor.
Rev. Watters was born on January 17, 1927 in Jersey City, New Jersey. Watters attended Seton Hall Preparatory School and went on to graduate from Seton Hall University. He was ordained as a Catholic priest in 1953 and served in parishes in Jersey City, Rutherford, Paramus, and Cranford, New Jersey.
Watters was an active private pilot, flying small single-engine planes as far as Argentina. In 1962, Watters became a chaplain with the New Jersey Air National Guard. In 1964, he entered active duty as a chaplain with the U.S. Army. He began his first 12-month tour of duty in Vietnam on July 5, 1966. During his first tour, he was awarded the Air Medal and a Bronze Star for Valor. At the end of his first twelve months, in July 1967, he voluntarily extended his tour for an additional six months.
Chaplain Watters also made the parachute drop in Operation Junction City, 22 February 1967.