Charles L. Smith

It is amazing how life circles around and paths wind up crossing.
I served in Vietnam as a young paratrooper in 1967-68. In 1970, I served in the 1st Special Forces Group. I did my duty.
Staff Sergeant Melvin Morris was in Special Forces in Vietnam in September, 1969 where he demonstrated extraordinary heroism. He was attempting a rescue of a fellow team commander when he and two others came under intense fire. Both the soldiers with him were wounded and he pulled them to safety. He then attacked four machine gun positions with hand grenades, and eliminated all four before recovering the body of his fellow team commander. He was wounded three times in this action. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC), America’s 2nd highest award, and went on to a distinguished military career.
In 2011, the Department of Defense (DoD) reviewed over 6,000 DSC’s awarded in WWII, Korea and Vietnam to make sure they were correctly awarded. They completed the review in 2014 and determined that 24 of the 0ver 6,000 Distinguished Service Cross awards should have been Medals of Honor. Of the 24, 21 were deceased. In a White House ceremony in 2014, the Medal of Honor was presented to the three living soldiers, and presented posthumously to the families of the 21. SSG Morris was one of the three.
Meanwhile, this former soldier had turned artist, and got the commission from the local folks to do a statue for SSG Morris. The design was sculpted, moulded and cast in the American Bronze Foundry in Sanford, FL, and was installed in Riverfront Park in Cocoa, FL on May 14, 2015.
This is the result.               

New Phone 197   New Phone 198

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