Senator Owen H. Johnson recently honored a local distinguished service member from the 69th Infantry to represent the 4th Senate district in the New York Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame. Senator Johnson inducted Sergeant First Class John E. Walsh, Bravo Company, 1st Battalion of the 69th Infantry at a ceremony in Albany on May 22, 2012. The Veterans’ Hall of Fame was established by the Senate in 2005 to honor and recognize outstanding service members, like Robert E. Walsh, whose gallantry in the U.S. Armed forces is complemented by their service to the community.
“It is my honor to induct Robert E. Walsh into the New York Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame,” said Senator Owen H. Johnson. “I am proud of John’s service in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and as one of the first Military responders to the attacks on the World Trade Center. His meritorious service to our state and our nation deserves special recognition because of the sacrifices he made to ensure that freedom and liberty would be preserved for future generations.”
Sergeant First Class Walsh has over 20 years of Army Service and is the Senior Active Duty Non Commissioned Officer (NCO) of the Fighting 69th on Long Island.
His awards and decorations include the coveted Combat Medic Badge, the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM), several Army Commendation Medals, numerous Army Achievement Medals, and various Campaign and NY State Awards.
SFC Walsh was one of the first Military Responders to the attacks on the World Trade Center (WTC) on September 11, 2001. At the WTC, SFC Walsh was responsible for assisting with the Military coordination of the rescue and recovery effort.
SFC Walsh was awarded the coveted Combat Medic Badge and the MSM for his actions on the Battle Field in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Combat Medic Badge is only awarded to qualified medics who provide medical aid to a ground combat unit while engaged in active ground combat.
During his combat tour in Iraq, SFC Walsh was personally involved in giving aid to over 70 members of his unit who were injured on the battle field and more than 20 soldiers who were killed in action.
The Combat Medic holds a special and honored place in the hearts and minds of Infantry ground troops because they are the forward medical element giving aid on the battle field. The Combat Medic is the first medical person the combat wounded soldier encounters.
SFC Walsh, his wife Lisa, and their two children reside in West Babylon. At home, off the battle field, SFC Walsh devotes countless hours on and off duty tending to the morale, health, and welfare of his present and former troops and their families. He continues to come to the aid of soldiers regardless of their injuries or issues stateside.
Photograph: Senator Owen H. Johnson Inducted Sergeant First Class Robert E. Walsh Of West Babylon into the New York Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame at a ceremony in Albany on May 22, 2012.