A nearly 60-year wait for the highest level of recognition is nearly over for Col. Paris Davis, one of the first Black Green Berets, who will soon receive the Congressional Medal of honor. File photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo
Feb. 13 (UPI) -- A nearly 60-year wait for the highest level of recognition is nearly over for Col. Paris Davis, one of the first Black Green Berets, who will soon receive the Congressional Medal of honor.
Davis, a veteran of the Vietnam War, received a phone call from President Joe Biden on Monday delivering the news that he would be given the highest honor a service member can receive.
"The call today from President Biden prompted a wave of memories of the men and women I served with in Vietnam -- from the members of 5th Special Forces Group and other U.S. military units to the doctors and nurses who cared for our wounded," Davis said in a press release.
Davis anticipates receiving the Medal of Honor soon at a White House ceremony. He was in line to receive the Medal of Honor decades ago but his paperwork disappeared in 1965, he told CBS News in a 2021 interview.
During the same year that his paperwork was lost, Davis led a raid in Saigon that lasted almost 19 hours, he said in the interview. When two of his fellow soldiers were gravely injured in the battle, Davis defied orders to save them.
"I think often of those fateful 19 hours on June 18, 1965, and what our team did to make sure we left no man behind on that battlefield," he said.
Davis said he is thankful to the president, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and other officials for the long overdue recognition. He also thanked those who continued to push for him to receive the Medal of Honor throughout the years.
"As I anticipate receiving the Congressional Medal of Honor, I am so very grateful for my family and friends within the military and elsewhere who kept alive the story of A-team, A-321 at Camp Bong Son," Davis said.