Four Mo. veterans receive Silver Star banners

Four Mo. veterans receive Silver Star banners

JEFFERSON CITY, MO (KFVS) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon presented four Missouri military veterans from World War II, Korea and Vietnam with the Silver Star banner and certificate to honor their sacrifice.

All the veterans received wounds, injuries or illness while serving in combat areas.

"During each of our country's wars, Missourians have stepped forward to serve, and have done so with courage and self-sacrifice," Gov. Nixon said. "These four veterans are among the many who incurred injury or illness while in harm's way, and I am pleased to help honor their service to our state and nation with this award. As we observe Silver Star Families of America Day on May 1, we are reminded of the sacrifices that our military veterans have made, and continue to make, on our behalf."

Nixon presented the Silver Star banners and certificates at the Capitol to:

  • Edward “Babe” Gross, of Jefferson City, served as a radio operator and machine gunner on a Army Air Corps B-25 bomber in the South Pacific during World War II.
  • James Shipley, of Tipton, served as an airplane mechanic with the 332nd Fighter Group, a unit of the famed Tuskegee Airmen that became known by their nickname “Red Tails”;
  • Bill Stroud, of Columbia, served in the Army as an infantry rifleman during the Korean War; and
  • State Sen. Wayne Wallingford, of Cape Girardeau, who served as a navigator on a B-52 bomber during the Vietnam War, and later as an intelligence officer during the first Gulf War.

In July 2009, Gov. Nixon signed House Bill 678, which sets May 1 by statute as the annual Silver Star Families of America Day.

Silver Star Families of America Day is designated as a day for honoring the wounded and ill members of the armed forces in the state of Missouri, and for recognizing the efforts of the Silver Star Families of America in honoring injured veterans across the United States.

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