Showing posts with label ex-POW. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ex-POW. Show all posts

Monday, December 30, 2019

Vietnam Veteran Ex-POW finds trip to Hanoi Hilton healing

Vietnam POW seeks healing at Hanoi Hotel

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
By Ernie Suggs
December 30, 2019
The mission back to Vietnam was designed to help veterans who are still struggling with some level of post-traumatic stress disorder. The hope is that they’ll reach closure by seeing the place of their greatest trauma in a different light.
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

When retired Lt. Col. James W. Williams returned to Southeast Asia this past fall, to the site of the worst 313 days of his life, the last thing he expected to find was himself.

For a period spanning 1972-1973, Williams, a former U.S. Air Force pilot, was a prisoner at the infamous Hanoi Hilton.

As he walked through what’s left of the prison, now a propaganda-filled museum, someone stopped him in his tracks and pointed at a photograph on the wall.

There he was.

Tall. Handsome. Full afro. The only black soldier, he was leading a line of POWS, the last to leave, out of Vietnam.
read it here

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Vietnam Veteran inspires after being imprisoned as POW

‘We made it:’ Local Vietnam veteran shares his POW story

Reporter:Erika Jackson
Writer: Briana Harvath
September 20, 2019

1,882 days; five and a half years. That’s how long Vietnam veteran Wayne Smith was a prisoner of war.

“We were in pretty bad shape, we certainly were,” said Smith.

He shared his story with us and dozens of people at Punta Gorda’s Military Heritage Museum.

The Air Force captain’s aircraft got shot down in 1968, just hours after this photo.

Now, he’s detailing his time in solitary confinement when communication was rare, but crucial.

“We used to break our knuckles by tapping on the walls and someone found out that actually, you could put the cup up against the wall, yell through it, and the other guy could listen to the other side,” said Smith.

Captured one warehouse over: prisoner of war survivor, Senator John McCain.

“We talked about anything,” said Smith. “It was important to stay in touch with each other.”

For two years, his family didn’t know if he was alive. Then, a released POW remembered his name.

“One of the things we thought was so important, any time we could, we would pass along names so in case someone made out, then we would tell the families,” said Smith.

Released during Operation Homecoming in 1973, the Naples man has shared his experience with people all over Southwest Florida.

A story, at one point, he didn’t know if he’d ever tell.

“We made it. And we survived because of each other,” he said.
read it here

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Widow discovered husband's secret life...diary of PTSD and POW

Discovery of WWII diary revives a Sarasota widow’s trauma

Herald Tribune
Billy Cox
September 6, 2019
Lorraine Glixon recently discovered her late husband’s World War II diary. Harry Glixon was a POW who was part of a historic prisoner exchange with Nazi Germany in 1944.

SARASOTA — Struggling through Parkinson’s disease, dementia and a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, Harry Glixon spent the last decade of his life racing the undertaker, pecking away at the keyboards with the two-fingered intensity that characterized his typing skills.

His widow, Lorraine, describes him as “obsessed” as the old warrior demanded more and more of her time to edit the manuscript he would call “My Story.” Over the years, she would sometimes hear him coming to terms with what he’d done and seen, raising his voice in his study, “I can’t do this! I can’t do this!” And Lorraine discovered she couldn’t do it, either.

After Lorraine gave up, Harry relied on three outside editors/writers to advance his memoir to an abrupt ending in 1962. That’s how far he’d gotten when, in 2006, 11 years into “My Story,” Harry took a spill in his motorized wheelchair and never recovered. He died a year later, at age 86.

The unfinished work that Harry Glixon left behind was so raw — and in so many ways, unflattering — that he requested in the preface that “the contents of my book be kept from the children until at least their 25th birthday.”

He had hoped, according to that preface, that his accounting would “demonstrate that I was a good person and not selfish.” But he also feared his journey through the past would “regenerate old demons and impact and diminish my current happiness.” And that, according to Lorraine, is exactly what happened.

Of the unfinished memoir’s 304 pages, roughly 80 are devoted to World War II, during which Harry Glixon earned two Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star with V for Valor and a recommendation for the Distinguished Service Cross. He also made history in such unprecedented fashion, it played on newsreels that cheered audiences in both the U.S. and Germany.
read it here

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Ex-POW Vietnam veteran Richard Burgess remembered for how he loved

Vietnam vet remembered as a hero and friend to all that knew him

Deseret News
Jasen Lee
July 28, 2019
"He could tap into (the sixth sense) of what connected us," Clemmons explained. "He taught me how to pay attention and it's amazing how many times it saved my life."
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
Marine Gunnery Sgt. Christopher Chambers and Sgt. Mark Maxfield fold the flag during services for Vietnam War veteran Richard Burgess during services at Camp Williams in Bluffdale on Friday, July 26, 2019.

BLUFFDALE – A onetime prisoner of war, Richard Burgess was a man who spent much of his life looking out for others' interests above his own.

To a person, speakers at his memorial service Friday at the Utah Veterans Memorial Cemetery all noted how selfless and caring a man he was to them and just about everyone he came in contact with.

"I knew he was special all our lives and I thought about him every day almost," said fellow Marine Gary Clemmons, who served with Burgess in Vietnam. "When I think I would have it bad, I would think of Richard (in the POW camp)."

So impactful to some was Burgess' connection with them, they came from miles away to pay their respects during a ceremony conducted with full military honors in Bluffdale. Burgess spent over six years as a prisoner of war during the Vietnam conflict, but didn't allow it the extinguish the kind, generous spirit that ingratiated him to so many people during his 72 years, speakers noted. read it here

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Ex-POW Ron Young speaker at Boy Scout dinner

Former POW to speak at Boy Scout dinner; AmeriServ CEO to be honored

The Tribune Democrat
Mark Pesto
January 20, 2019

The keynote speaker at the 49th annual Harry E. Mangle Memorial Dinner in Johnstown will be a military veteran who flew Apache helicopters in Iraq, survived a stint as a prisoner of war and once appeared on the reality TV show “The Amazing Race.”

That veteran, Ron Young, has a story that will resonate with those who attend the dinner, which is hosted by the Laurel Highland Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Erik Tomalis, chief development officer for the Laurel Highlands Council, said Friday.

“He’s a lifelong Boy Scout,” Tomalis said. “He loves the mission, he loves the military and he loves giving back, so we’re very honored that he’ll be coming in to share his story. I think (Young’s story) connects well with Johnstown … and connects to our Scouting story.”

Young, a Georgia native and Eagle Scout, was deployed with the Army National Guard twice, conducted search-and-rescue flights in the Gulf of Mexico and is currently flying a helicopter for the air medical service provider Air Methods, according to a biography provided by Tomalis.

In March 2003, during the American invasion of Iraq, Young and another pilot were taken prisoner after their helicopter was shot down, according to contemporary news reports. They were held captive with five other American prisoners until they were rescued about three weeks later.

As a speaker, Young “credits the leadership and training he received in the military for his survival,” according to his biography.
read more here 

Also a story about Ron Young from 2013 
Iraqi war POWs still cope with aftereffects 10 years later

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Vietnam POW U.S. Army Captain Isaac “Ike” Camacho

El Paso Army veteran recalls life as POW in Vietnam

El Paso Inc.
By Lisa Amaya
November 11, 2018

Camacho escaped the camp on July 9, 1965, during a monsoon, slipping through the bars of his cage and hiding in the jungle for four days until he reached U.S. forces.
Memories of being caged, shackled and exposed to the powerful herbicide Agent Orange linger in the mind of retired U.S. Army Captain Isaac “Ike” Camacho, the first American to escape a prisoner of war camp in Vietnam.

Still, Camacho, who spent nearly two years as a prisoner of war, said he would serve again if he could.

“At one point in your life you have to serve your country. This would be one way of serving your country,” the now 81-year-old Camacho said from his home in East El Paso.

Camacho is among the thousands of borderland veterans whose service to the country will be commemorated during Veterans Day on Sunday, Nov. 11.

His life story has been recounted in “Isaac Camacho, An American Hero.” The book by Billy Waugh, a retired Army sergeant major, was released in March by Permuted Press.
read more here

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Ex-POW, Decorated Vietnam Veteran Bought a Gun...Went to Jail?

Decorated Vietnam Veteran, POW Sentenced To 7+ Years For ‘Mistake’ Made Decades Ago

CBS 21 News
JD Miles
October 17, 2018

Friends of the vet showed up to support him after he pleaded guilty in a Plano federal courtroom and was sentenced to 87 months in prison by a judge.
PLANO (CBSDFW.COM) – A decorated Vietnam War hero from Plano is going to prison for a crime he committed decades ago.

Alfred Pick was sentenced by federal judge District Judge Marcia A. Crone to seven years in prison for a mistake he made nearly 40 years ago — buying a fully automatic gun that’s illegal for citizens to own. The rifle was similar to the one Pick had in the Army where he served as a lieutenant.
“This gun was very rare at that time it was rare to see one so he instantly had a connection to it,” said Pick’s attorney Ryne Sandel. “Over the course of his life he and his wife and collected about 14 weapons, many of them were collectors items.”

Pick lived in Plano’s Air Park neighborhood along with other pilots who enjoy a runway right outside their homes. The 70-year-old Vietnam veteran even served as the president of his homeowners association. Thus, when the ATF raided his home last year it came as a shock to friends like Mark Shackelford.
read more here

Sunday, August 26, 2018

John McCain “He passed the way he lived, on his own terms"

Cindy and Meghan McCain mourn John McCain with heartbreaking tribute
Huffington Post
Aug 26th 2018
“He was a great fire who burned bright, and we lived in his light and warmth for so very long,” she wrote. “We know that his flame lives on, in each of us.
The wife and daughter of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) wrote heartbreaking tributes to the lawmaker hours after his death on Saturday.

Cindy McCain, the senator’s wife of 38 years, expressed her grief on Twitter.

“My heart is broken,” she wrote. “He passed the way he lived, on his own terms; surrounded by the people he loved, in the place he loved best.”

Meghan McCain, the senator’s 33-year-old daughter, wrote an emotional statement thanking her father for being a hero to both her and the country.

“I was with my father at his end, as he was with me at my beginning,” she wrote. “In the thirty-three years we shared together, he raised me, taught me, corrected me, comforted me, encouraged me and supported me in all things.”
read more here

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Ex-POW, Disabled Vietnam Veteran hit by drunk driver

Local vet struck by ice cream truck: 'I'm glad it was me that got hit and not kids'
NBC 3 News Las Vegas
by Kelsey Thomas
August 14th 2018
The former prisoner of war was heading home to Veterans Village on Wednesday when police say he was hit by a drunk driver who was behind the wheel of an ice cream truck.
LAS VEGAS (KSNV) — A disabled Vietnam veteran is recovering after he was hit on the sidewalk by an out-of-control driver.

Police say Nasario Garcia was drunk behind the wheel of an ice cream truck when he hit Steven Whitefeather.

Officers say they found empty beer bottles in a freezer in the back of the truck.

The crash happened last week on Fremont near Eastern in downtown Las Vegas. Officers say Garcia jumped a curb and hit Whitefeather, who was in a motorized wheelchair on the sidewalk.
read more here

Monday, June 11, 2018

Col. Bud Day, three wars, POW, MOH and now promoted

Col. Bud Day promoted posthumously to brigadier general
Northwest Florida Daily News
By Jim Thompson
June 11, 2018

ARLINGTON, VA. — Col. Bud Day, one of the military’s most decorated war heroes and a longtime veteran’s activist who settled in Northwest Florida after his retirement from the Air Force in 1977, was promoted posthumously Friday to the rank of brigadier general.
Day, who died in 2013 at the age of 88 at his home in Shalimar following a long battle with cancer, was a veteran of World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars. He was held as a prisoner of war in Vietnam for nearly six years. During his time in captivity, Day met Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, then a lieutenant commander in the Navy, and helped nurse a badly injured McCain back to health. The two remained close throughout Day’s life.

Among the 70 medals Day earned was a Congressional Medal of Honor he received for escaping and evading capture by the Vietnamese, and refusing to provide them with information that would have compromised American missions. He was eventually recaptured and held at the infamous Hanoi Hilton.
read more here

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Ex-POW Vietnam veteran gets teams of angels

He has 2 Purple Hearts but couldn't afford home repairs. Then help arrived - for free.
Idaho Statesman
Michael Katz
June 9, 2018

Sitting in a chair in his family room, cane in one hand and his other arm crossed over his midsection, Charlie Moore is an unassuming hero. He can share a war story or two, but he can just as easily talk about growing up on a farm in Wisconsin.

On a humid June evening, Moore, 75, is wearing an Army hat and American flag-clad T-shirt. For more than 40 years, he has been a disabled veteran, after an accident in Vietnam left him unable to work. He wears his Army garb proudly.
read more here

Sunday, January 28, 2018

UK Gulf War, Ex-POW hopes MOD pays attention

Top guns in tears: The bravest and the best yet weeping and traumatised, war heroes say they have nowhere to turn for help - will the MoD heed their call?
Daily Mail
John Nichol For Mail On Sunday
PUBLISHED: 27 January 2018
"My experiences have also made me a much more emotional person and tears can flow at the simplest of triggers such as Remembrance Sunday, when I recall the friends I have lost. In those moments I take solace that at least I understand what is happening to me – the processes of PTSD and how it shows its teeth."
John Nichol was beaten by Hussein's henchmen and paraded on Iraqi television, with his picture flashing across the world

Twenty-seven years ago I was shot down over Iraq, captured, tortured and forced by Saddam Hussein’s henchmen to appear on television to denounce my actions as an RAF officer.

Images of my bruised face flashed across the world and became a lasting image of the horrors of the 1991 Gulf War.

As a prisoner of war, I felt like the most insignificant, terrified human being on Earth.

The memories of my abuse and brushes with death are still with me. Dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has become part of my life.

For this reason I am backing The Mail on Sunday’s campaign to improve mental healthcare for serving troops, including the introduction of a 24/7 helpline.

I feel the pain of those worst affected by PTSD. As someone who has experienced it myself, I understand what they are going through and the confusion they can face. I can be enjoying a perfectly normal day or night when a sensory stimulus, or trigger, fires me back into my past.

For me it is primarily noise – loud bangs, fireworks going off, trains going past, all these sound like the Coalition jets that flew missions over Baghdad attacking several of the buildings we were held in.
read more here

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Three Wars, Ex-Double POW Marine Undaunted Life

Marine survives being a POW in two different wars, returns home to live the American dream

Department of Veterans Affairs
October 31, 2017

Undaunted and undefeated, despite years of imprisonment and brutality, Harrison continued to serve our country in Vietnam until he was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps as a lieutenant colonel on June 30, 1969.

Charles L. Harrison was born outside Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1921. Barely out of High School, Harrison enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1939.By August 1941 he was on his way to Wake Island, a vital staging area for the coming war in the Pacific.

Of the 449 Marines who manned Wake’s defenses when Wake Island was bombarded by Japanese forces a few hours after the Dec. 7 attack on Pearl Harbor, 49 were killed, 32 were wounded, and the remainder, including 20 year old Charlie Harrison, became prisoners of war.

For 45 long months, during which he contracted malaria and other assorted maladies, Harrison suffered under the hands of the Japanese until he was rescued at the end of WWII with less than 110 pounds on his 5-foot 9½-inch frame.

With his courage and love of country intact, Harrison returned home to marry his childhood sweetheart and start a family. He and his growing family enjoyed a peaceful existence until the morning of June 25, 1950, when ninety thousand North Korean troops pushed across the 38th parallel, thus commencing the Korean War.

On Sept. 15, 1950, U.S. Marines under the direction of General Douglas MacArthur made a surprise amphibious landing at Inchon, on the west coast of Korea. Harrison was one of those Marines. 

On Nov. 29, at the Chosin Reservoir Campaign, after a battle in which Harrison was wounded and for which he later received a Purple Heart, he was captured by the Chinese communist forces and again found himself held as a prisoner of war – one of only two Marines in U.S. history to hold the dubious distinction of being held as a POW in two different wars.

Harrison remained in captivity until he, along with seventeen fellow POWs, managed to escape six months later.
This great American hero passed away with little fanfare on Jan. 17, 2015.
read more here

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Fake Vietnam POW Veteran Arrested After Elderly Veteran Ripped Off

POW impersonator exploits elderly veteran
News Herald Reporter
July 27, 2016

PANAMA CITY — A man who thought he was lending a helping hand to a fellow veteran and former prisoner of war instead was swindled out of thousands from his savings that he likely will not see again, according to arrest records.

Robert “Bob” Leroy Rogers, 61, was arrested Monday in connection with the scheme. According to police, Rogers claimed to be a veteran and former Vietnam POW with financial troubles in order to borrow more than $18,000 from an elderly neighbor.

Rogers allegedly told 74-year-old William Lipovsky, a former air force master sergeant, he would repay him with up to $1 million after he received a large settlement from the government for his service. However, after several delays and conflicting stories about whether he would be reimbursed, Lipovsky contacted the authorities.
read more here

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Ex-POW Vietnam Veteran Fred Cherry Passed Away

Fred Cherry, POW in North Vietnam for seven years, dies at 87
The Washington Post
By Bart Barnes
Published: February 20, 2016
Fred Cherry, an Air Force fighter pilot, was downed by enemy fire over North Vietnam in 1965, and he spent more than seven years a prisoner of war.

He had grown up in the Jim Crow South, and his captors made it clear he could mitigate the harshness of his incarceration, including routine torture, and improve his living conditions by speaking out against the racial injustice and discrimination that he had faced as an African American in the United States.

When beatings failed to bring him around, his jailers tried another tactic. They assigned a self-described "Southern white boy" as his cellmate, hoping that racial antipathy between the two men would weaken his resolve and produce a propaganda triumph for North Vietnam.

The plan failed.

Instead, the two men, Cherry and a Navy fighter pilot, then-Ensign Porter Halyburton, became fast and lifelong friends. Each would credit the other with having saved his life.
read more here

Saturday, December 12, 2015

America’s first female POW honored? History Forgotten.

December 14, 2015
Iraqi war vet Lynch honored in Cape Coral

America’s first female POW honored in SWFL 
Naples Daily News
By Jessica Lipscomb
December 11, 2015

A plan three months in the making, former Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch landed in Fort Myers Thursday for a weekend of events with local veterans.
In this file photo, Jessica Lynch, who shot to fame as a POW during the Iraq war in 2003, is featured in the South Charleston, W.Va. Christmas Parade Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011.(AP Photo/Bob Bird)
Lynch, who was captured in Iraq in 2003 and rescued by U.S. Special Forces nine days later, was welcomed at Southwest Florida International Airport with a flag line reception and a group of Patriot Guard Riders eager to have her in town. Ramon Villanueva Jr., the commander of Amvets Post No. 65 in Cape Coral, said he has been working with one of Lynch's family friends, who lives locally, since September to coordinate the visit.
read more here
Would have been a good idea for the reporters to learn some history first before deciding on that headline.

First black female POW sets the record straight The physical healing is done, but nearly seven years after becoming the U.S. armed forces’ first black female prisoner of war when she was captured by Iraqi insurgents, Shoshana Johnson is still dealing with the mental trauma of her ordeal. In March 2003, just days after the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Johnson’s unit got separated from its convoy and was ambushed in the city of Nasiriyah. Eleven members of the unit were killed, and seven, including Johnson and Jessica Lynch, were captured. Lynch, who was held separately, became a national hero when she was rescued after nine days of captivity. Johnson and four other captives were rescued after 22 days, also to be welcomed as heroes.

Gulf War Major Cornum Recounts Her Ordeal as a POW During Persian Gulf War

Female POWs prove women can endure war's hardships
From Florena Budwin, a Civil War woman who disguised herself as a man to join union troops and was held in a confederate prison camp, to the 67 Army nurses who were taken captive by the Japanese in World War II, there have been less than 100 military women held as POWs throughout American history.

Women Prisoners of War During the Civil War Dr. Mary Walker was held for four months in a Confederate prison camp, accused of being a spy for the Union Army. Doctor Walker is the only woman to have been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

WWII POWs Get Apology from Japanese Company

70 Years after WWII, Japanese Company Apologizes to US POWs
Associated Press
by Andrew Dalton
Jul 21, 2015
"This is a glorious day," said Murphy, who stood tall and slender in a gray suit at the ceremony and looked much younger than his 94 years. "For 70 years, we wanted this."
James Murphy, World War II veteran and prisoner of war, is photographed
at his home in Santa Maria, Calif., Thursday, July 16, 2015.
(AP Photo/Michael A. Mariant)
LOS ANGELES — Saying they felt a "deep sense of ethical responsibility for a past tragedy," executives from a major Japanese corporation gave an unprecedented apology Sunday to a 94-year-old U.S. prisoner of war for using American POWs for forced labor during World War II.

At the solemn ceremony hosted by the Museum of Tolerance at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, James Murphy of Santa Maria, California, accepted the apology he had sought for 70 years on behalf of U.S. POWs from executives of Mitsubishi Materials Corp.

Hikaru Kimura, senior executive officer for Mitsubishi Materials Corp., said through a translator that the company offered a "most remorseful apology" to the about 900 POWs who suffered "harsh, severe hardships" while forced to work in Mitsubishi mines and industrial plants.

Murphy, who toiled in Mitsubishi copper mines and is one of the few left alive to accept such an apology, called it sincere, humble and revealing.
read more here

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Donald, "4 Deferment" Trump Doesn't Like POWs Because They Were Captured?

McCain is not well liked in the veteran community simply because of his record while serving in the Senate. (Too long of a story there) Still for Donald Trump to say "I like people that weren't captured, OK?" it is not ok because it means he just insulted all POWs in the process.

Trump questions McCain's bravery, says 'he is not a war hero'
By Mark Preston and Eugene Scott
July 18, 2015
According to The Smoking Gun, which obtained selective service records for Trump in 2011, he received four student deferments between 1964 and 1968, and later a medical deferment in 1968.
Washington (CNN)Donald Trump ignited a political firestorm Saturday by questioning whether Sen. John McCain -- who spent over five years as a prisoner during the Vietnam War -- is a war hero.
"He is a war hero because he was captured," Trump said, cutting him off. "I like people that weren't captured, OK? I hate to tell you. He is a war hero because he was captured. OK, you can have -- I believe perhaps he is a war hero."

By mid-afternoon, Trump tried to walk back his blunder on Twitter, saying "captured or not, all our soldiers are heroes!"

But his attempt at damage control seemed unlikely to diminish the anger his remarks had caused. They provoked an immediate outcry from his 2016 presidential rivals and the Republican National Committee, which has expressed concern about the impact his controversial remarks on immigration have had on the GOP brand.

For Republicans waiting to pounce on Trump and knock him from his position as the party's leading presidential candidate, the real estate mogul may have handed them an opening.
read more here

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Military Women Worked Hard For The Country

Time to treat military women right!
Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
July 9, 2015

When you think about women serving in the military, it is all too easy to forget how much they do in fact contribute as well as risk. The get killed and wounded, but we don't talk about that very much.
"She Works Hard For The Money"
Original Song by Donna Summer
She works hard for the country
So hard for it, honey
She works hard for the country
So you better treat her right

Twenty-eight years have come and gone
And she's seen a lot of tears
Of the ones who come in
They really seem to need her there
It's a sacrifice working day to day
For too many hours too little pay
But it's worth it all
To hear them say that they care

She works hard for the country
So hard for it, honey
She works hard for the country
So you better treat her right

Already knows, she's seen her bad times
Already knows, these are the good times
She'll never sell out, she never will
Not for a dollar bill
She works haaaaard

She worked hard for the country
So hard for it, honey
She worked hard for the country
So you better treat her right

I was driving home from work with that song stuck in my head at the same time I was thinking about next month. A group of us decided that it was time to honor military women/veterans simply because "She Served" and earned a lot more attention than they have been getting.

In the process of talking about what we're up to, I talked about Mary Edwards Walker and how she received the Medal of Honor during the Civil War. (You, know the war that everyone is talking about when it it comes to the Confederate flag but not talking much about the men and women fighting during it.) Anyway, folks have been befuddled hearing about this. A woman with the Medal of Honor? Why not since they have received every other award as well plus sacrificed their lives since the beginning.
Who was the first military woman killed in action? Although women have served in the US Armed Forces only since 1901, women served on the battlefield with the armed services from the time of the American Revolution. On Dec. 11, 1775, Jemima Warner was killed by an enemy bullet during the siege of Quebec.
Military women have been killed in action throughout every war.
More than 400 U.S. military nurses died in the line of duty during World War I. 543 WWII, 17 nurses were killed in Korea, 8 during Vietnam and 16 during Desert Storm.
Back to the Medal of honor. The first woman to become a prisoner of war was also the first and only woman to receive the Medal of Honor.
Only Woman Medal of Honor Holder Ahead of Her Time
When the Civil War started, the Union Army wouldn't hire women doctors, so Walker volunteered as a nurse in Washington's Patent Office Hospital and treated wounded soldiers at the Battle of Bull Run in Virginia.

In 1862, she received an Army contract appointing her as an assistant surgeon with the 52nd Ohio Infantry.

The first woman doctor to serve with the Army Medical Corps, Walker cared for sick and wounded troops in Tennessee at Chickamauga and in Georgia during the Battle of Atlanta.

Confederate troops captured her on April 10, 1864, and held her until the sides exchanged prisoners of war on Aug. 12, 1864.

Walker worked the final months of the war at a women's prison in Louisville, Ky., and later at an orphans' asylum in Tennessee.

The Army nominated Walker for the Medal of Honor for her wartime service. President Andrew Johnson signed the citation on Nov. 11, 1865, and she received the award on Jan. 24, 1866. Her citation cites her wartime service, but not specifically valor in combat. Walker's citation reads in part that she "devoted herself with much patriotic zeal to the sick and wounded soldiers, both in the field and hospitals, to the detriment of her own health. She has also endured hardships as a prisoner of war for four months in a Southern prison while acting as contract surgeon."

The War Department, starting in 1916, reviewed all previous Medal of Honor awards with the intent of undoing decades of abuse. At the time, for instance, the medal could be freely copied and sold and legally worn by anyone.

Past awards would be rescinded and future ones would be rejected if supporting evidence didn't clearly, convincingly show combat valor above and beyond the call of duty. Mary Walker and nearly 1,000 past recipients found their medals revoked in the reform. Wearing the medal if unearned became a crime.

The Army demanded Walker and the others return their medals. She refused and wore hers until her death at age 87 in 1919.
President Jimmy Carter restored Mary Walker's Medal of Honor on June 11, 1977. Today, it's on display in the Pentagon's women's corridor.

Deborah Samson Gannett, from Plymouth, Massachusetts, was one of the first American woman soldiers. In 1782, she enlisted under the name of her deceased brother, Robert Shurtleff Samson. For 17 months, Samson served in the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. She was wounded twice. She cut a musket ball out of her own thigh so a doctor wouldn't find out she was a woman. Years later, in 1804, Samson was awarded a pension for her service. Also during the Revolution War, in 1776, Margaret Corbin fought alongside her husband and 600 American soldiers as they defended Fort Washington, New York. In the Mexican War, Elizabeth C. Newcume dressed in male attire and joined the military at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In 1847, she battled Native Americans in Dodge City. Ten months later, she was discharged when her gender was discovered. In July 1848, however, Congress paid her the land and money she was owed for her service. A History of Women in the U.S. Military
Oh but there are so many more.

Distinguished Service Cross, 6 women

Navy Cross, 4 women

Silver Star, 3 women. Mary Roberts Wilson, WWII, Sgt, Leigh Ann Hester, Iraq and Spec. Monica Brown Afghanistan.

Air Medal, Lt. Reba Whittle WWII and three crewmembers of a surveillance plane

Col. Ruby Bradley, most decorated military woman served during WWII. She was a POW in a Japanese prison camp. 2 Bronze Stars, plus 32 more. But she wasn't the first. That was 1Lt Cordelia Cook, an Army nurse during WWII.

You can read the rest here at Women Medal Recipients showing, contrary to popular belief, women have earned every medal for their service to this country.

Demographic Characteristics Department Veterans Affairs
• According to data from the 2009 American Community Survey, 1.5 million Veterans in the United States and Puerto Rico were women. Women represented about 8 percent of the total Veteran population in 2009.

• Twenty-nine percent of all living women Veterans served only during times of peace. Almost half of all women Veterans have served during the Gulf War Era (August 1990 to the present).

• The median age of women Veterans in 2009 was 48, compared with 46 for non-Veteran women.

• In 2009, 19 percent of women Veterans were Black non-Hispanic, compared with 12 percent of non-Veteran women. In contrast, the percentage of women Veterans who were Hispanic was half that of non-Veterans (7 percent compared with 14 percent).

• Women Veterans were more likely to have ever married than non-Veteran women. In 2009, 83 percent of women Veterans were currently married, divorced, widowed, or separated compared with 74 percent of non-Veteran women.

• In 2009, 23 percent of all women Veterans were currently divorced compared with 12 percent of non-Veteran women.

• Thirty-nine percent of all women Veterans under the age of 65 had children 17 years old or younger living at home in 2009, compared with 35 percent of similar non-Veteran women.

The list of what women have done in our military is far too long for a post. There are simply too few hours in a day to truly do these women justice.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Shouldn't The Only Woman To Have Received Medal of Honor Be On $10 Bill

On Wednesday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said a woman will be featured on a redesigned $10 bill in 2020 -- the 100th anniversary of the Constitution's 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote.

Can't think of anyone to be on the $10 bill than the only woman ever to have received the Medal of Honor. Bet you didn't know that happened but it did!

Mary Edwards Walker (November 26, 1832 – February 21, 1919) was an American feminist, abolitionist, prohibitionist, alleged spy, prisoner of war and surgeon.
Born-November 26, 1832
Oswego, New York, U.S.
Died-February 21, 1919 (aged 86)
Oswego, New York, U.S.
Cause of death-Natural causes
Resting place-Rural cemetery
Oswego, New York, U.S.
Education-Falley Seminary (1850-1852)
Syracuse Medical College (1853-1855)
Hygeeia Therapeutic College (1862)
Employer-United States Army
Spouse(s)-Albert Miller
Awards Medal of Honor
Known for-Receiving the Medal of Honor during the American Civil War, first female U.S. Army surgeon, feminism, prohibitionism, abolitionist, first and only female Medal of Honor recipient

As of 2015, she is the only woman ever to receive the Medal of Honor.[1]

In 1855 she earned her medical degree at Syracuse Medical College in New York, married and started a medical practice. The practice didn't do well and she volunteered with the Union Army at the outbreak of the American Civil War and served as a surgeon at a temporary hospital inside the capitol.
Walker, ca 1870. She often wore men's clothes and was arrested for impersonating a man several times.

Women and sectarian physicians were not even considered for the Union Army Examining Board because they were unfit, let alone someone who met both of those qualifications.[2] She was captured by Confederate forces after crossing enemy lines to treat wounded civilians and arrested as a spy. She was sent as a prisoner of war to Richmond, Virginia until released in a prisoner exchange.

After the war, she was approved for the highest United States Armed Forces decoration for bravery, the Medal of Honor, for her efforts during the Civil War. She is the only woman to receive the medal and one of only eight civilians to receive it. Her name was deleted from the Army Medal of Honor Roll in 1917 and restored in 1977. After the war, she was a writer and lecturer supporting the women's suffrage movement until her death in 1919.
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