When they were Young
Below are the photos and
brief biographies of five well-known and often recognized
American heroes, all recipients of the Medal of Honor. Can you
match them up with the photos of these same five heroes when
they were you?
Often called The Lone Eagle for his historic
solo flight from New York to Paris, Charles Lindberg
received accolades and the highest national honors of almost
every major nation in the world. An Army Air Corps Reserve
pilot, his peace time exploit also earned him the Medal of
Honor. During WWII, as a civilian advisor to Marine Corps
and Army aviators in the Pacific, Slim Lindberg (his
nickname of preference) flew some 50 unauthorized combat
missions, and shot down at least one Japanese plane.
The Story of Charles Lindberg
Between the World Wars, Army pilot Jimmy Doolittle was
an innovator and record setter, pioneering instrument flight
and establishing speed records. During World War II his
skills became critical to the innovative idea of embarking
bombers from the deck of an air craft carrier to make the
first retaliatory strike against Japan. Throughout the war
he continued to serve, commanding the 12th Air Force and the
8th Air Force.
The Story of Jimmy Doolittle
As a Marine Corps pilot flying out of Guadalcanal, Joe
Foss was the first American aviator to tie the World War I
combat record of Ace of Aces Eddie Rickenbacker. Foss
emerged from the war as the Marine Corps' own Ace of Aces,
became governor of his home state of South Dakota, and then
went on to additional careers that included hosting a
television show, serving as President of the National Rifle
Association, and as commissioner of the American Football
League, where he was instrumental in establishing the
football championship game we call the SUPER BOWL.
Joseph Bob Kerrey
During the Vietnam War, Bob Kerrey became the first
U.S. Navy SEAL (Sea, Air, and Land) to earn the Medal of
Honor, in an action that caused him the loss of one leg.
Following military service Kerrey entered politics, serving
as Governor of his home state of Nebraska. Following that
service he was elected to the U.S. Senate, also for
Nebraska. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the
Democratic nomination for President in 2002.
On Halloween night, October 31, 1972, Navy SEAL Mike
Thornton was on a mission deep into enemy held territory
when his small team was ambushed. In a heroic rescue
Thornton saved the life of his SEAL Team Leader in one of
those rare instances in which the Medal of Honor was awarded
for an action that resulted in saving the life of another
Medal of Honor recipient. Mike Thornton's action that night
was the last Medal of Honor action of the Vietnam War, and
the last action by a surviving recipient.
Mike Thornton's Story