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Gorge cities recognized for war heroes

The Dalles and Hood River are two of 12 towns in Oregon that will be designated as a “Medal of Honor City.”

The nonprofit Bend Heroes Foundation requested that the Legislature and Gov. Kate Brown honor communities where the state’s 26 Medal of Honor recipients once lived.

Recipients of the medal from The Dalles are: Loren Kaufman, Stanley Adams and Harry Fadden.

The Hood River medal beneficiary is Marcus Robertson.

The medal is the highest and most prestigious military decoration to recognize service members who distinguish themselves by acts of valor. The oldest continuously issued combat decoration of the armed forces, the medal has three versions: One for the Army, one for the Navy and one for the Air Force. Marines and recipients from the Coast Guard receive the Navy version.

To earn the Medal of Honor, the soldier, sailor, airman or Marine had to act with gallantry and fearlessness beyond the call of duty. His or her life-risking actions had to occur during a combat mission.

“We will meet with city officials and the Oregon Veterans’ Home soon to discuss where to place the plaque,” said Dick Tobiason, a retired Army officer who chairs the Bend foundation, which spearheaded the push for the special designation.

A permanent marker posted in each city will name the medal recipient and the image of that individual’s medal, along with information about his military service.

Rep. John Huffman, R-The Dalles, was a chief sponsor of House Bill 2100, which designated an Oregon Medal of Honor Highway and the accompanying resolution that recognized cities where recipients lived before or after their service.

Both measures passed by a unanimous vote of the House and Senate and were signed by Brown on June 20.

The new law goes into effect Oct. 10.

Tobiason said the 26 recipients from Oregon exhibited valor in eight different wars in 10 countries over a 108-year period, from the Civil War to Vietnam.

The legislation sets the stage to honor future medal recipients connected with the state.

The other 10 Medal of Honor Cities in Oregon are: Agness, Bend, Corvallis, Eugene, Jordan Valley, Medford, Oakridge, Portland, Richland and Salem. All are incorporated except Agness.

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