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Honor Them: Resolution for Woody Williams is right call

Just three Americans who earned the Medal of Honor during World War II remain among the living. West Virginian Hershel W. “Woody” Williams is one of them.

Williams earned his medal “For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as Demolition Sergeant serving with the First Battalion, Twenty-First Marines, Third Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima, Volcano Island, 23 February 1945.”

U.S. Sens. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., revealed last week they are backing a Senate resolution calling for Williams to receive a state funeral upon his passing. Only the president can authorize such an honor, but a resolution from the Senate would be persuasive.

Williams, 95, is hale and hearty, traveling extensively on behalf of various worthy causes. One of his ideas, monuments throughout the nation honoring Gold Star Families who have lost loved ones in war, has gained gratifying traction. A Gold Star monument is to be erected in City Park, here in Parkersburg.

Both Manchin and Capito emphasized the idea of a state funeral for Williams is to pay tribute to all members of the Greatest Generation, who fought and won World War II.

Senators should adopt the resolution. The House of Representatives should follow suit. And the president, whomever that may be when the time comes, should agree with them.

Honoring Woody Williams and his comrades in arms who saved the world ought to be an easy decision to make.

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