Nov 09 2020
Opinion | The Vindicator
Before long, the last American military veteran of World War II will be gone from among us.
We try to pay them homage by telling the stories of our World War II veterans, and all veterans, each Monday between Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Today is the final day of this year’s Monday series. Despite these words of tribute, we know we never can thank and honor them adequately.
Now President Donald Trump is being asked to do something more special that would provide an appropriate formal and national expression of gratitude.
In our country, state funerals are reserved for very high-ranking people such as ex-presidents.
Members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives want President Donald Trump to order that the last surviving Medal of Honor winner from World War II be honored in that way.
There are just two left from the 472 Medal of Honor winners during that war. They are Hershel “Woody” Williams of West Virginia and Charles Coolidge of Tennessee.
As lawmakers pointed out in their letter to Trump, honoring whichever one of the two passes away last “would not only recognize that one veteran, but all 16 million men and women who put their lives on the line during the war to defend the freedoms that we hold dear.”
They are correct. President Trump should issue the order so that our nation can, as the members of Congress noted, “continue to show our gratitude for the greatest generation.”