Regardless of the honors bestowed on my grandfather, George Robb, the greatest and most revered hero of the 369th Infantry was Henry Johnson. Wounded 21 times in combat he never so much as received the Purple Heart from the United States military while the French Army awarded him their highest combat decoration. It is now time for the United States to correct this oversight and award Henry Johnson the Congressional Medal of Honor.
A second Battle for Henry Johnson is currently being waged to grant Henry Johnson the recognition due him albeit posthumously. Click here for the official Sergeant Henry Johnson website
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For five years the second battle of Henry Johnson has been waged behind the scenes. It was just luck that I stumbled on it in the Internet before its outcome was decided so that I could add my two cents. The following stories and press releases lifted from the Internet show the course of recent events.
1-22-2001 At long last, Recommendation to honor black WWI veteran, Story in Jefferson City, MO Paper
2-12-2000 NY Gov. Pataki's press release announcing a request for Johnson's posthumus recommendation.
2-12-2001 ROTC Newsletter story with background on Johnson.
5-3-2001 Column by Leonard Pitts criticizing the Joint Chief's recommendation against the award on "technical" grounds.
5-18-2001 VFW press release urging the award of a medal of honor despite the Joint Chief's inaction.
5-19-2001 AP story published in the Jefferson City paper about Missouri's Senator Kit Bond support for Johnson. Mr. Johnson's son Herman is a Missouri resident.
7-12-2001 My two cents. I had just begun doing a little research on my Grandfather when I read about the efforts on Henry Johnson's behalf. I sent this email to Mr. John Howe, one of his supporters.
1-11-2002 Henry Johnson's grave is discovered in Arlington National Cemetary
3-20-2002 Johnson is awarded the Distinguished Service Cross - while the 2nd highest military award it is insufficient.