Family given soldier's medal for heroism

April 27, 2009 at 7:44 PM
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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C., April 27 (UPI) -- It took 42 years, but the family of a U.S. Army Green Beret major missing in action in Vietnam has been given the Distinguished Service Cross he earned.

At a ceremony in Fayetteville, N.C., last Wednesday, the story was told how on March 24, 1967, Maj. Jack T. Stewart was last seen providing cover fire for his comrades as they evacuated their position at Bu Dop in Phuoc Long province near the Cambodian border while under attack from an overwhelming North Vietnamese force, American Forces Press Services said Monday.

Among the family members who attended the ceremony were Stewart's former wife, Diane Hasner, son Troy, daughter Karen Kelly, his sister Barbara Stewart Pratt and a cousin, Kermit Stewart.

"This has been a long time coming," Hasner said. "It's time for closure for family, friends and the men involved in the situation that day."

Also on hand was John M. Throckmorton, the lone survivor of the firefight who had submitted Stewart and Staff Sgt. Roger Hallberg for valor awards.

After meeting the Hallberg family four years ago and learning neither man had been honored for his heroism, Throckmorton resubmitted paperwork that led to Hallberg being awarded the Silver Star and Stewart the Distinguished Service Cross, the second-highest medal possible in the Army, for his exceptional gallantry.

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