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Category Archives: Military News
Richard Arvine Overton, a man believed to be the United States’ oldest living war veteran celebrated his 107th Memorial Day last Monday. It is amazing to see a man who has witnessed the changing of the times firsthand. He is an eyewitness of the Great Depression, World War Two, the moon landing, the Vietnam War, the incredible rises in technology, the change of the millennium, and so many other world shaping events.
Despite his age Overton still does all of his own yard work. He enjoys working and caring for horses. He also mentioned that he never watches television. When asked about his good health Overton stated that he has taken an aspirin every day and smokes around twelve cigars. He also enjoys a bit of whisky in coffee in the mornings and sometimes at night. It is incredible to see such a sound mind in a man who has lived over a century.
Tim Davis, a veteran of the Vietnam War, recently re-visited the site of his tour in Vietnam for a sense of closure. The effects of the Vietnam War left Davis troubled and unsettled for over 45 years. Finally he returned to Vietnam to revisit several sites of combat and other points of interest to him and other friends that had been in the war. “I had a lot of buddies that got lost…got killed, and we were really, really close. It meant a lot for me to go back there and see where they actually got killed…and say goodbye to them.” Davis stated when asked about his experiences on his return to Vietnam. A much brighter and well-deserved surprise awaited Davis as he returned to his home. A crowd of more than one hundred friends, family, and grateful citizens awaited Davis for a well-deserved hero’s welcome. Davis was escorted by the county sheriff, motorcyclists and a military jeep to Columbia City for a true hometown celebration.
Two brothers, Michael and Mauro Mazzariello found several military medals in a local collectibles shop, and began a search for the veteran that they had originally been awarded. After some time, their search led them to Charles George, a young soldier who sacrificed himself to save the other men in his platoon. In 1952 during the Korean War, Charles George was killed in action when dived on a live grenade to absorb the damage and save his fellow soldiers. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his sacrifice along with several other medals. Michael and Mauro Mazzariello found George’s Purple Heart Medal, his Bronze Star and GCM in an antique shop. The owner gave the medals to the two boys after they promised to track down the original owner and return them.
Often those who have sacrificed much and more for our freedom and country are forgotten. It is sad and unfair that appreciation for our veterans is not shown enough, but companies like Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) are out fighting for the rights and honors of our veterans. Recently, VFW offered considerable aid to a veteran who had been wounded in combat several times. VFW helped Michael Burns through financial means to secure his and his family’s futures.
Michael Burns was injured several times over multiple tours of duty in Iraq. He demonstrated incredible bravery and dedication as he returned to action each time, once only a month after injuries. It is this kind of hero that a nation can respect and be grateful for. However Michael Burns returned to the United States after his services to discover that he was not able to work in most jobs due to his injuries. In a time of severe financial struggle, the VFW’s Unmet Needs program offered their aid after Michael’s case had been presented.
Recently the Secretary of Defense announced the authorization of a new United States military medal. The Distinguished Warfare Medal is now among the ranks of every other prestigious award that has ever been offered to the brave men and women who have served and sacrificed for our country. The medal is dedicated to recognizing military efforts that surpass the requirements of the Bronze Star medal. It is also specific to only those who have served since September 11th 2001.
Below is a transcript of the official announcement. You can also download the PDF version here.
SUBJECT: Distinguished Warfare Medal
It gives me great pleasure to announce the creation of the Distinguished Warfare Medals (DWM). The DWM provides distinct Department of Defense (DOD)-wide recognition for extraordinary achievement, not involving acts of valor, directly impacting combat operations or other military operations, such as operations authorized by a Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Execute Order, as approved by me.