Two Dozen Soldiers Awarded Medal of Honor

President Barack Obama bestowed the Medal of Honor on 24 Army veterans of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam in a ceremony at the White House on Tuesday. “The presentation of our nation’s highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor, is always a special occasion,” Obama said. “Today it is truly historic. This is the single largest group of service members to be awarded the Medal of Honor since the Second World War.” The three living recipients—all veterans of Vietnam—wore their full service dress uniforms for the March 18 ceremony. They included, Sgt. Santiago Erevia, Sgt. 1st Class Melvin Morris, and MSgt. Jose Rodela. Each of the soldiers previously received the Distinguished Service Cross—the military’s second highest award—but were upgraded thanks to a congressionally mandated review of “thousands of war records” to identify and honor minority veterans that may have been slighted in the past. “These two dozen soldiers, among them Hispanic, African American, and Jewish veterans, were identified as having earned the Medal of Honor,” said Obama. “This is the length to which America will go to ensure everyone who serves under our proud flag receives the thanks that they deserve,” he added. (Link to the biographies and citations for all 24 MOH recipients.)