Archive for Saturday, April 16, 2011

Rep. Mike Pompeo asks Congress to act on Kapaun honor

April 16, 2011

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— A Kansas congressman is pushing his House colleagues to waive regulations to approve the Medal of Honor for an Army chaplain who died in a prison camp during the Korean War.

Rep. Mike Pompeo, a Wichita Republican representing the 4th District, asked the House Armed Services Committee this week to approve legislation waiving the rules to award the Medal of Honor to the Rev. Emil Kapaun, a captain who died in May 1951 in a prisoner of war camp.

“Chaplain Kapaun repeatedly risked his own life to save hundreds of fellow Americans,” Pompeo told the committee. “His extraordinary courage and leadership inspired thousands of prisoners to survive hellish conditions and resist Chinese indoctrination. His actions reflect great credit upon himself, the 1st Cavalry Division and the United States Army.”

Federal law restricts the awarding of the Medal of Honor to two years from the time of the qualifying military action. If Congress approves the legislation waiving the time restriction, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a native of Kansas, could recommend to President Barack Obama that Kapaun receive the medal.

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