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First Woman Gets Silver Star Since WW II
AP ^ | June 16, 2005 | JOHN J. LUMPKIN

Posted on 06/16/2005 7:33:16 PM PDT by West Coast Conservative

A 23-year-old sergeant with the Kentucky National Guard on Thursday became the first female soldier to receive the Silver Star — the nation's third-highest medal for valor — since World War II.

Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester, who is from Nashville, Tenn., but serves in a Kentucky unit, received the award for gallantry during a March 20 insurgent ambush on a convoy in Iraq. Two men from her unit, the 617th Military Police Company of Richmond, Ky., also received the Silver Star for their roles in the same action.

According to military accounts of the firefight, insurgents attacked the convoy as it traveled south of Baghdad, launching their assault from trenches alongside the road using rifles, machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades. Hester and her unit moved through enemy fire to the trenches, attacking them with grenades before entering and clearing them.

She killed at least three insurgents with her M4 rifle, according to her award citation. In the entire battle, 26 or 27 insurgents were killed and several more were captured, according to various accounts. Several Americans were also wounded in the firefight.

"Her actions saved the lives of numerous convoy members. Sgt. Hester's bravery is in keeping with the finest traditions of military heroism," her award citation reads.

"I'm honored to even be considered, much less awarded, the medal," Hester told the American Forces Press Service, a military-run information service. "It really doesn't have anything to do with being a female. It's about the duties I performed that day as a soldier."

(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: hero; military; militarywomen; silverstar; wariniraq; waronterror; women; worldwar2
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To: Theophilus

No. Saying she won the Silver Star makes it sound like a contest. It also implies that all those who didn't get a medal are losers. It is not a cliche; it is an important distinction.


51 posted on 06/18/2005 9:51:37 AM PDT by csmusaret (Urban Sprawl is an oxymoron)
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To: NY Attitude
The Distinguished Service Cross.
52 posted on 06/18/2005 9:55:34 AM PDT by MilspecRob (Most people don't act stupid, they really are.)
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To: MilspecRob

It seems to me more MOH are awarded than DSC. I'm probably wrong but it seems I never hear about anyone getting one.


53 posted on 06/18/2005 9:58:25 AM PDT by csmusaret (Urban Sprawl is an oxymoron)
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To: Chief_Joe
I'm not trying to belittle her achievements

Well IMHO you are. I find that despicable, have you had trouble with women all your life?

54 posted on 06/18/2005 10:01:21 AM PDT by MilspecRob (Most people don't act stupid, they really are.)
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To: Chief_Joe
I'm not trying to belittle her achievements, but they hardly merit support for women in combat. There's nothing extraordinarily special about what she did to merit that award.

Well, maybe it's because I'm a chick, but I find that comment just a WEE bit belittling. Then again, I wasn't there, either. Perhaps the feminists really ARE running the show at the Pentagon, but that has zero to do with Sgt. Hester's actions. Especially in this war, where anyone anywhere could be attacked. Even if you had her tucked away in the supply battalion, you couldn't be certain of her safety.

And yes, there are "thousands of male soldiers who have done and are doing more on a daily basis". They ought to be recognized, too. But that is the nature of the beast. Oftentimes, exceptional performance is either overlooked or taken for granted for a great many servicemembers, male and female. It takes nothing away from them that she and her fellows received those awards (and I noticed how you belittled THEIR awards as well, implying they only got them to justify the award to Sgt. Hester...I think that's pretty insulting to all those soldiers.)

55 posted on 06/18/2005 2:10:09 PM PDT by exnavychick (There's too much youth; how about a fountain of smart?)
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To: exnavychick
...it's because I'm a chick, but I find that comment just a WEE bit belittling...

...(and I noticed how you belittled THEIR awards as well, implying they only got them to justify the award to Sgt. Hester...I think that's pretty insulting to all those soldiers.)

When you get over your emotional outpouring, I suggest you take a moment and review the numbers and the context of the article. They were 29 combatants killed -29, and three Silver Stars were giving out. No one in this unit was killed, and none were critically injured. Do you know of any other battles during this conflict in which so many Silver Stars were giving out? If not, what made this attack so spectacular? The article goes out of it's way to suggest that this proves women belong in combat, even brings up the fact that congress recently passed a measure the prevents women from serving in such roles. Read the article again and tell me what it has to say about the actions of the men who also received Silver Stars.

56 posted on 06/18/2005 3:16:09 PM PDT by Chief_Joe (From where the sun now sits, I will fight on -FOREVER!!!)
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To: Chief_Joe

Actually, I'm not emotional at all. :)

I was replying to the comment that you made about NOT belitting anyone. I was simply pointing out other statements that you made that appeared to contradict that. That is independent of whatever numbers you want to talk about. Either you are belittling folks, or you are not. Either you're belitting just her, or not.

I don't really care too much what your opinion of women in combat is, and overall, I would agree with your assessment re: the numbers quoted in the article...I was just struck by the contradiction. Or backpedaling, if you prefer that term.

Do try to avoid some emotional outpouring yourself, and pay attention to what I'm actually responding to, rather than what you THINK I am responding to.


57 posted on 06/18/2005 4:34:58 PM PDT by exnavychick (There's too much youth; how about a fountain of smart?)
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To: West Coast Conservative

Who was the woman who was awarded Silver Star in WWII?


58 posted on 06/29/2005 11:10:10 AM PDT by Lexington Green (I am a good American, so I arrested my cancer-stricken mother for using medical pot.)
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