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Schumer Introduces Medal Of Honor Bill For NY Soldier

WWI hero Henry Johnson is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
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WWI hero Henry Johnson is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

New York Sen. Charles Schumer has introduced legislation to allow a black World War I soldier from Albany to receive a posthumous Medal of Honor.

The Democrat introduced a bill in the Senate Thursday that would exempt Sgt. Henry Johnson from the rules specifying that a Medal of Honor must be awarded within five years of the heroic act being recognized. A companion bill will be introduced in the House.

Schumer announced last month that Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel recommended Johnson receive the nation's highest military decoration for bravery in combat.

If Congress approves the legislation, it goes to President Barack Obama for final approval.

Johnson was serving in the all-black 369th Infantry Regiment when he saved a comrade from capture during a German raid in France in May 1918.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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