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Perlmutter Honors WWII Veteran by Formally Presenting Medals for Service
Lakewood, Colo. – On August 3, 2016, U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) held a formal medal presentation ceremony for Lakewood resident, Oscar Reiss, Ph.D. During the ceremony, Dr. Reiss was presented with seven military medals for his service during World War II.
“Dr. Reiss has had an amazing life with some terrible losses but because of his courage and bravery, we’ve all benefited as a country and been blessed by his contributions both in and out of military service,” said Perlmutter.
Born in Rhineland, Germany, Dr. Reiss moved to New York City in April of 1937. He later became a herdsman of 40 Ayrshire cattle delivering 250 gallons of milk. This was deemed “essential” as part of the war effort, however Dr. Reiss was unable to volunteer for military service because he was not a U.S. citizen. In 1944, he was drafted into the U.S. Army and attended Basic Infantry Training at Ft. McLellan, AL. As part of that process, he was awarded U.S. citizenship.
Dr. Reiss was then sent to Cherbourg, France assigned to the 79th Infantry Division B. Company in Alsace, France, guarding the right flank during the Battle of the Bulge. In 1945, Dr. Reiss was awarded the Silver Star Medal. Several days later he was wounded by shrapnel and taken to a hospital in Liege, Belgium and was later awarded the Purple Heart for these injuries. While Dr. Reiss was awarded both the Silver Star Medal and Purple Heart, they were never formally presented to him.*
Dr. Reiss contacted Rep. Perlmutter’s office to ask for a formal medal ceremony for the Silver Star Medal and Purple Heart Medal. During that process, Rep. Perlmutter’s office discovered five additional medals that Dr. Reiss earned for his service during WWII but were never obtained or formally presented.
Rep. Perlmutter has held several medal ceremonies for local Veterans who were never awarded or presented with the medals and/or honors they earned during their service to our country. Last summer, Rep. Perlmutter held a ceremony for three local WWII Veterans who were Prisoners of War (POW).
The specific medals presented to Dr. Reiss include:
· *Silver Star Medal: The third highest military decoration for valor that can be awarded to any person serving in the U.S. Armed Forced. The medal is awarded for gallantry in action against enemy of the U.S.
· *Purple Heart Medal: The oldest military award still awarded to those wounded or killed while serving in the U.S. military on or after April 5, 1917.
· Army Good Conduct Medal: Awarded for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity in active Federal military service to a soldier who distinguishes himself or herself from among his or her fellow soldiers.
· European-African-Middle Easter Campaign Medal: To recognize military service members who have performed military duty in the European Theater during the Second World War.
· World War II Victory Medals: Commemorates military service during WWII and is awarded to any member of the U.S. military.
· The Army of Occupation of Germany Medal: Service medal of the U.S. military which recognizes those members of the U.S. military who served in the European occupation force following the close of WWI.
· Honorable Service Lapel, WWII pin: Awarded to U.S. military service members who were discharged under honorable conditions during WWII.