WASHINGTON, March 3 (UPI) -- The American Legion Tuesday said it plans to honor TV personality Ben Stein for his support of the U.S. armed forces.
The 64-year old lawyer, economist, author, actor and commentator is the recipient of the veterans service organization's 2009 National Commander's Public Relations Award.
The honor is to be bestowed upon Stein by David K. Rehbein, the Legion's national commander, during a luncheon ceremony Wednesday in Washington, Stein's birthplace.
"Ben Stein's intelligence and wisdom are well known," Rehbein said in a statement. "And he has demonstrated these qualities in a most important way through his steadfast support of our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. His native wit is just a bonus -- but a great one."
Stein's award citation commends him for his "stalwart commitment to raising public awareness about the contributions of America's men and women in military uniform."
"Your book 'The Real Stars: In Today's America, Who Are the True Heroes?' is an eloquent reminder that it isn't actors or celebrities that deserve stardom, but the soldiers who patrol the streets of Iraq to protect others," the commendation continued. "You have been an articulate and staunch advocate for America's military members and veterans in numerous media interviews and public appearances. Moreover, your support for God, Old Glory, family and the American way of life is a hallmark of your outstanding patriotism and professionalism."