A native of Ohio, John Fox attended ROTC at Wilberforce University and received a commission as a second lieutenant with the US Army in 1941. He was assigned to the segregated 92nd Infantry Division. Serving as a forward observer with the 598th Artillery Battalion as the Germans overran the village of Sommocolonia in Italy on December 26, 1944, Fox called for strikes near his observation position. When the artillery strikes failed to halt the Germans, Fox called for artillery directly on his position. His body was amidst over 100 dead Germans three days later. He was awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously in 1997.