Effort underway to give Doolittle Raiders Congressional Gold Medal

By BARRIE BARBER | Dayton Daily News, Ohio | Published: May 21, 2013

DAYTON, Ohio — U.S. Sen. Rob Portman has signed on to award the surviving Doolittle Tokyo Raiders the Congressional Gold Medal.

The Ohio Republican joins with U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, who introduced the resolution this year.

Four members of the original Doolittle Raiders crew survive today. One of the Congressional Gold Medals would be displayed at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force near Dayton.

On April 18, 1942, 16 B-25 Army Air Corps bombers launched off the Navy aircraft carrier USS Hornet to bomb targets in Japan. The mission was credited with lifting U.S. morale after the devastating Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and the forcing the Japanese to move military forces closer to the island nation because of fears of more attacks.

“During World War II, the Doolittle Raiders exemplified our military’s selfless acts of valor,” Portman, R-Ohio, said in a statement. “They courageously defended our freedoms through their daring operation and restored hope in Americans still reeling from the attacks on Pearl Harbor. These heroes deserve our gratitude, and this award will serve as a token of appreciation to the four living Doolittle Raiders and ensure their service is not forgotten.”

The congressional legislation needs two-thirds support in both the House and the Senate for consideration. U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, is a co-sponsor of the House resolution.

B-25s led by Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle prepare for takeoff from the USS Hornet on April 18, 1942.


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