Presidential Medal of Freedom Petition for Audie Leon Murphy

Mr. President:

Audie Leon Murphy is an American Legend, an iconic figure in American history, and a hero for all times. Audie Murphy came from humble roots to become our Nation's 'most decorated' combat soldier of World War II, amassing an unprecedented 33 decorations, medals, and citations, many of which were awarded multiple times. He was further honored by the Governments of France and Belgium as well.

Audie Murphy enlisted in the Army at the age of 17 after having been turned down by the Navy, Marines, and Army Air Corps. He spent 30 months in combat in World War Two and earned the Medal of Honor for his single-handed defeat in Eastern France of an estimated 250 enemy soldiers and six Jagdpanther tanks. For over one hour he remained alone atop a burning tank destroyer calling artillery adjustments and manning a .50 caliber machine gun while defending his unit against the onslaught of enemy dismounted infantry and armor. He was personally responsible for protecting his sector and certainly saving his unit from destruction.

During the course of the war Audie Murphy, with little formal education rose from the enlisted rank of Private to the rank of First Lieutenant. He continued his military career postwar as a member of the Texas National Guard and Army Reserve and retired with the rank of Major.

Following the war, Audie Murphy became a best-selling author with his highly acclaimed memoirs, "To Hell and Back". His memoirs are still in publication today and can be found at any major bookstore. He later became a very successful motion picture actor, and portrayed himself in the autobiographical film "To Hell and Back" which became the highest grossing film in the history of Universal Studios until it was finally knocked off the charts by "Jaws" some 20 years later. In all Audie Murphy starred in or produced a total of 44 feature films, penned patriotic poetry, and became a successful country music songwriter.

He assisted the U.S. Army in the production of a documentary in 1955 for "The Big Picture" a popular U.S. Army series titled "The Third Division in Korea" and later assisted the United States government for a second time in the 1960 documentary"Broken Bridge" that highlighted the dangers of the nuclear age and the Soviet missile threat at the height of the Cold War. For this service to our Nation he was awarded the U.S. Army Outstanding Civilian Service Medal.

Above all Audie Murphy was the sterling example of an American patriot. He narrated several Public Service Announcements for the U.S. Army Recruiting Command, as well as having been the first veteran to speak openly and honestly about the effects of post-traumatic-stress-disorder (PTSD) with which he suffered his entire adult life.

The personal story of Audie Murphy's triumph over adversity and poverty serves as an inspiration to millions of Americans and he continues to be a role model and inspiration for multitudes of American military personnel; past and present.

Audie Murphy has previously been awarded many honors. He has been cited in the "Congressional Record" on numerous occasions. He has had schools, monuments, roads, a VA Hospital, and numerous buildings on military bases named in his honor, and the Army today has the "Sergeant Audie Murphy Club" to honor its most distinguished enlisted soldiers. Audie Murphy has further received a "Star" on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and was inducted into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame.

In addition; in 1995 he has been honored with Postage Stamps by the Governments of Guyana, Nevis, and Sierra Leone. In 2000 he was honored with a commemorative United States postage stamp as part of the 'Distinguished Soldiers Series'. In 2001 he was honored with a postage stamp from the Republic of Palau.

On October28, 2013, Major Murphy was awarded Texas supreme military honor, the Texas Legislative Medal of Honor by Governor Rick Perry.

Perhaps his single greatest honor is having been laid to rest after his untimely death in a plane crash at age 46 at Arlington National Cemetery. His widow, Mrs. Audie L. Murphy passed away April 8, 2010 at age 87. His sons, Terry and James survive him, as does his sister Nadine.

His amazing achievements in life, his patriotism, his dedication to his fellow man, and the protection of America and America's freedom exemplify the finest qualities and virtues of American citizenship and are worthy of the presentation of the United States Presidential Medal of Freedom.

We, the undersigned, respectfully request that the United States Presidential Medal of Freedom be posthumously conferred upon Major Audie Leon Murphy.

Respectfully,

The Petition Signers

Sponsor

David A. Phillips

Links

 

Distinguished Signatories

 

Sec of Defense Melvin Laird

Sec of Defense Frank Carlucci

Sec of the Army John Marsh

Sec of the Army Thomas White

Senator Robert 'Bob' Dole

Senator Jeremiah Denton

Senator Robert "Bob" Kerrey

Senator Alan Simpson

Congressman Bob Michel

Sec of VA Anthony Principi

Governor Raul Castro (AZ)

The Legislature, State of Texas

General Hugh H. Shelton, CJCS

General Richard Myers, CJCS

General Tommy Franks, USA

General Bantz J. Craddock, USA

General John Abizaid, USA

General Edward C. Meyer, USA

General John Wickham, USA

General James L. Jones, USMC

General Carl Vuono, USA

General Gordon Sullivan, USA

Admiral Paul Yost, USCG

General Dennis Reimer, USA

General Peter Schoomaker, USA

General Ralph Eberhart, USAF

Admiral Thomas Hayward, USN

General PX Kelley, USMC

General John H. Tilelli, USA

General James Lindsay, USA

General Lawrence Skantze, USAF

General Edwin H. Burba, USA

General Glenn Otis, USA

General Larry Ellis, USA

General Richard C. Cody, USA

General F. Michael Rogers, USAF

General David Bramlett, USA

General Jack Merritt, USA

General Sam Walker, USA

General Walter E. Boomer, USMC

General Thomas Schwartz, USA

General Leon Salomon, USA

General Robert Shoemaker, USA

General Carl W. Stiner, USA

General Volney Warner, USA

General Earl O'Loughlin, USAF

General Fred Kroesen, USA

General Leon LaPorte, USA

General Burwell B. Bell, USA

General John Galvin, USA

General Ronald H. Griffith, USA

General Joseph P. Hoar, USMC

General Robert W. Bazley, USAF

General William Kernan, USA

General John W. Foss, USA

General Gary E. Luck, USA

General Robert RisCassi, USA

General Wallace H. Nutting, USA

General John Chain, USAF

General Louis C. Wagner, USA

General Fred Woerner, USA

General Anthony Zinni, USMC

General John Coburn, USA

General William S. Wallace, USA

General John Piotkowski, USAF

LTG Julius W. Becton Jr., USA

LTG David Grange, USA

LTG Sam Wetzel, USA

LTG Leroy Manor, USAF

LTG Claudia Kennedy, USA

LTG James B. Vaught, USA

LTG Leroy Manor, USAF

LTG Frank Libutti, USMC

LTG Richard Trefry, USA

LTG Henry Emerson, USA

LTG John Sylvester, USA

LTG Charles Bagnal, USA

LTG William Caldwell, USA

MG Patrick H. Brady, USA

MG Herbert McChrystal, USA

MG John Singlaub, USA

MG Chris Adams, USAF

MG Rocco Negris, USA

MG James Livingston, USMC

MG Tom Sadler, USAF

MG Donald J. Strait, USAF

MG Sidney Shachnow, USA

MG Lloyd B. Ramsey, USA

MG Alfred Valenzuela, USA

RADM Jeremiah A. Denton, USN

BG George Price, USA

BG David L. Grange, USA

BG Anthony Tata, USA

BG Charlie Duke, USAF Apollo 16

Col Jack Lousma, USMC, Skylab

Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, USA

Colonel Elliott Sydnor, USA

LTC Anthony B. Herbert, USA

Cmmdr. Everett Alvarez, USN

SMA William Connelly, USA

SGM Billy Waugh, USA

 Mr. Dan Rather (CBS)

Mr. Toby Keith

Mr. Craig Morgan

Mr. Lee Greenwood

Mr. Ray Stevens

Mr. Roy Clark

Mr. George Beverly Shea

Mr. Ernest Borgnine

Mr. Kris Kristofferson

Mr. Hugh O'Brien

Mr. Clint Walker

Mr. Robert Conrad

Mr. James Drury

Mr. Efrem Zimbalists, Jr.

Mr. R. Lee Ermey, USMC

Ms. Linda Hope

Ms. Dawn Wells

Mr. Russell Johnson

Ms. Barbara Eden

Mr. Arte Johnson

Mr. Mike Connors

Mr. Lee Majors

Mr. John Saxon

Ms. Kathryn Grant-Crosby

Captain Dale Dye, USMC

50 Medal of Honor Recipients

Former 'Doolittle Raiders'

Major Ted Van Kirk, 'Enola Gay'

Mr. Yogi Berra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Discussion

  • Thomas Mclean Yes he deserves it, I find it astonishing that by the time the War in Europe was over Audie hadn't yet reached the age of 20, inspirational !!!

  • Marianne Cascio AUDIE MURPHY MOST CERTAINLY DESERVES THE PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM. HE FOUGHT FOR HIS COUNTRY AND SUFFERED PTSD THE REST OF HIS LIFE AS A RESULT OF HIS SERVICE. THIS IS THE LEAST WE CAN OFFER TO RECOGNIZE HIM AS A WAR HERO AND A MAN WHO WENT TO GREAT LENGTHS TO PROTECT THE MEN HE SERVED WITH.

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Petition highlights

  • Admiral Michael Mullen, USN (ret) who served as the 17th Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Obama has formally endorsed the Audie Murphy Presidential Medal of Freedom Petition.
  • General Richard E. Cavazos USA (ret) who became the first Mexican-American four-star general in the history of the U.S. Army has endorsed the petition. General Cavazos earned the first of his two awards of the Distinguished Service Cross in Korea as a 1st Lieutenant and the second in Vietnam as a Lieutenant Colonel.
  • Lieutenant General Sam Wilson, USA (ret) who was the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, a deputy director of the CIA, a founding member of the OSS, and one of the originators of Delta Force has endorsed the petition. In addition, he served on the board investigating the aborted hostage rescue in Iran in 1980, and was the developer of COIN, the counter-insurgency doctrine of the U.S. Army. Finally, he was a member of 'Merrill's Marauders' in WWII and served as the technical advisor for the movie of the same name starring Jeff Chandler. His role in the Marauders was later memorialized in Charlton Ogburn's book The Marauders, which was made into the 1962 movie Merrill's Marauders (film). In the film he was cast as General Merrill's assistant "Bannister" under the pseudonym Vaughn Wilson; he also appeared in the film trailer introducing the film and narrating the trailer. During WWII, while a member of the OSS working behind the lines in occupied Burma conducting clandestine operations against the Japanese, General Wilson (then Lieutenant Wilson) was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. Here is in part a short chronicle of his service with Merrill's Marauders. He took command of the Marauders in January 1944, with the mission of marching deep into the jungles of Burma behind Japanese lines to cut off enemy communications and supplies. General Merrill led the Marauders, over steep mountains to outflank the Japanese to block their retreat from Shadazup, which the Marauders later captured. The Marauders, many stricken by malaria, typhus and other dreaded diseases, marched 112 miles over mud slogged mountain trails as high as 6000 feet defeating the enemy twice enroute to the daring seizure of an enemy airfield and garrison at Myitkyina. What makes the general otherwise unique is that he lied about his age and enlisted at age 16 as a bugler in 1940.
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