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    Lt. Robert L. Poxon Memorial Ceremony

    Lt. Robert L. Poxon Memorial Ceremony

    Photo By Sgt. James Larimer | Army Reserve Maj. James Holley, the 414th Civil Affairs Battalion training and...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. James Larimer 

    220th Public Affairs Detachment

    SOUTHFIELD, Michigan - On June 2, 1969, a young first lieutenant from Detroit, Michigan, serving as a platoon leader on a reconnaissance mission, landed by helicopter in Tay Ninh Province, Republic of Vietnam. Soon after he would distinguish himself by continuing to lead his men, despite being wounded multiple times, in an assault on an enemy machine-gun bunker.

    After succeeding in silencing the enemy guns in the bunker, he was struck once again by enemy fire and fell, mortally wounded. The lieutenant's comrades followed their leader, pressed the attack, and drove the enemy from their positions.

    1st Lt. Robert L. Poxon's actions that day earned him the Medal of Honor, the United States' highest award for gallantry. Over fifty years later on June 30, 2019, Poxon's family, members of the community, 414th Civil Affairs Battalion and the 220th Public Affairs Detachment gathered in Southfield, Michigan to honor Poxon's sacrifice on that day.

    Fifty years ago this month Poxon sacrificed his life for his Soldiers in Vietnam, said Maj. James Holley, the 414th Civil Affairs Battalion training and operations officer.

    "It is with great respect and admiration that we take this opportunity to reflect on Lt. Poxon's memory and the uncompromised standards that he displayed on June 2, 1969," said Holley. "Of added importance to the Soldiers of the 414th is the legacy that he has left for us to carry forward."

    The ceremony included remarks from Poxon's brother Dave Poxon, Mayor of Southfield, Michigan, Kenson J. Siver and Holley.

    "It is very humbling to know that Robert's sacrifice has been acknowledged," said Dave Poxon. "I have two main objectives today, one is to express my family’s honor, and gratitude for acknowledging our brother's service and how important that was and how that affects our family."

    Sitting in the middle of the room was a table displaying Poxon's Medal of Honor and the corresponding citation.

    "The Medal of Honor is awarded by the President in the name of Congress to a person who, while a member of the armed forces distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty," said Holley. "It is a cherished symbol of valor and the ultimate demonstration of the values which all Soldiers live,"

    The Army Reserve Center in Southfield, which is named after Poxon, has pictures of him lining the walls as well as a description of his actions on that day not only to ensure his memory lives on but to act as an example for the Soldiers who work and train at the reserve center to live up to.
    "1st Lt. Poxon serves as the ultimate example of the warrior ethos, he always placed the mission first, he never accepted defeat, he never quit, and he never left a fallen comrade," said Holley. "Poxon's legacy will endure."



    Date Taken: 06.30.2019
    Date Posted: 07.26.2019 01:59
    Story ID: 331204
    Location: SOUTHFIELD, MI, US 

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