Award of Honor: three Sandusky residents honored

French recognize Ohio veterans for service in World War II
Andy Ouriel
Dec 8, 2013

The U.S. and French governments honored six World War II veterans, all hailing from Ohio, for their heroism in helping preserve each country's liberties.

Officials recognized them during a ceremony Friday at the Ohio Veterans Home, where a French liaison presented four living veterans and family members of the two others who recently died with France's Medal of Knight of the Legion of Honor — the highest such award France dignitaries dole out.

French military and political leader Napoleon Bonaparte established the award.

Click HERE to see more photos from the ceremony

All six veterans spent time fighting battles in France, all to help liberate the country. Their efforts ensured six-plus decades of peace in France, the longest uninterrupted period in the country's history.

"France will never forget your service and will always remember the heroism that you showed saving France," said Stephen Knerly Jr., an honorary consul of France. "Thank you for your courage. Collectively, you saved France, and France will never forget."

Among the military veterans receiving the medal: Robert E. Zonneville, an 88-year-old Mentor resident.

"I'm highly honored," Zonneville said. "It makes you feel really great inside."

The award recipients:  

 
Charles Malachosky, 92, Cuyahoga Falls
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1942.
• Served as a Technician 5th Grade in the Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 2nd Armored Division.
• Stationed overseas from February 1944 until April 1946.
• Participated in the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe.
• Received the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with five battle stars, the Good Conduct Medal, the World War II Victory Medal and the American Theater Ribbon.
 
Richard R. Robb, 95, Ohio Veterans Home, Sandusky
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1941.
• Served as a Technician 5th Grade in the Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 27th Infantry Battalion, 4th Armored Division.
• Stationed overseas from January 1944 until October 1944.
• Participated in the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe.
• Received the Purple Heart Medal, the Distinguished Unit Citation, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with five battle stars, the Combat Infantryman Badge, American Defense Service Medal and the Good Conduct Medal.
Note: Robb died this past week. Friday's award was accepted in his honor by his nephew, Robert McCurdy.
 
John W. Stauffer, 91, Ohio Veterans Home, Sandusky
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1942.
• Served as a Private 1st Class in Company E, 331st Infantry Regiment, 83rd Infantry Division. 
• Stationed on the European mainland from June 1944 until November 1945.
• Participated in the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe.
• Received Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with five battle stars, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the World War II Victory Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the American Campaign Medal and the Jubilee of Liberty Medal from the Government of Normandy.
 
John J. Turk, 89, Novelty
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1943.
• Served as a Technician 5th Grade in Battery A, 67th Anti-Aircraft Gun Battalion.
• Stationed on the European mainland from February 1944 until December 1945.
• Participated in the campaigns of Rome-Arno, Southern France, Rhineland and Central Europe. 
• Received the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with four battle stars, the Good Conduct Medal and the World War II Victory Medal.
 
John Weske, Sandusky
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1943.
• Served as a Technical Sergeant in Company B, 175th Infantry Regiment, 29th Infantry Division.
• Stationed on the European mainland from June 1944 until December 1945, landing in Normandy at Omaha Beach and taking part in the battle of St. Lo.
• Participated in the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, Southern France and Rhineland.
• Received the Bronze Star Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with four battle stars, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Good Conduct Medal, the American Campaign Medal and the World War II Victory Medal.
Note: Weske died earlier this year. The award was accepted in his honor by his daughter, Jan Bucholz.
 
Robert E. Zonneville, 88, Mentor
• Entered the Armed Forces in 1943.
• Served as a Staff Sergeant in Company H, 121st Infantry Regiment, 8th Infantry Division.
• Stationed overseas from December 1943 until July 1945.
• Participated in the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland and Central Europe.
• Received the Bronze Star Meal, the Purple Heart Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with four battle stars, the Good Conduct Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Certificate of Merit and three Overseas Service Bars.

Comments

Stop It

Other side of the planet, same war...this will bring tears to anyone's eyes:

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gene44870

No it dont bring tears to my eyes , It just makes me even more proud to be an American , Its just a shame it took so long to get awards to the Men and Women that placed their lives on the line as well as lost their lives , just so we could live the free lives that we take for granted . God Bless ALL WHO SERVE AS WELL AS GOD BLESS AMERICA