Distinguished Service Cross : The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Gerald Lamson Ayers (475522), Private, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve), for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving with Company Q, FOURTH Marine Raider Battalion, in the early part of the engagement at Bairoko Harbor, New Georgia, Solomon Islands, on 20 July 1943. While bringing well-aimed fire to bear on strong enemy positions, Private Ayers was severely wounded and later died from these wounds. However, his critical wounds neither interfered with his fire nor his alertness and when he discovered an enemy machine gun about to open fire, he passed word back to his comrades and directed fire of his platoon upon it. Refusing evacuation until the Japanese strong point had been obliterated, Private Ayers' action saved the lives of many of the men in his company. The outstanding heroism and skill displayed by Private Ayers on this occasion reflect highest credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of the United States.