Audie Leon Murphy (June 20, 1924 – May 28, 1971) was a fifth grade dropout from an extremely poor family who became the most decorated American soldier of World War II. After the war he became a celebrated movie star for over two decades, appearing in 44 films. He also found some success as a country music composer.
Murphy became known as the most decorated United States soldier of the war during twenty-seven months in action in the European Theatre. He received the Medal of Honor, the U.S. military's highest award for valor, along with 32 additional U.S. and foreign medals and citations, including five from France and one from Belgium.
Murphy's successful movie career included To Hell and Back (1955), based on his book of the same title (1949) . He died in a plane crash in 1971 and was interred, with full military honors, in Arlington National Cemetery.