Editorial: Williams deserving of honor

Published 3:14 am Sunday, August 23, 2020

This week, Gov. Mike DeWine added his voice to the growing chorus urging President Donald Trump to consider a Tri-State resident for the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Hershel “Woody” Williams, who turns 97, in October, received the Medal of Honor in 1945 for his actions in the Battle of Iwo Jima in World War II. He is the last Marine veteran of World War II to receive the honor and the last surviving honoree of the war’s Pacific theater.

Williams recently spoke with The Tribune for our special section on the 75th anniversary of the war’s end and he spoke of the work he has been doing in the three decades since he officially retired at the age of 69.

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A constant advocate of veterans, Williams has worked to raise funds for scholarships for Gold Star children, who have lost a parent in service to their country. His foundation has also helped to establish Gold Star memorials for these families in most U.S. states.

He is a familiar face in our area and often brings his message to local schools and events, where he inspires the youth and educates them on the importance of service and duty to their country.

Because of his wartime service and his ongoing dedication to his country, we agree with DeWine and all of the other officials who have signed onto the effort to honor Williams.

He would be a worthy recipient of the Medal of Freedom.