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Lee Ross Hartell (August 23, 1923 – August 27, 1951) was a soldier in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He posthumously received the Medal of Honor for his actions on August 27, 1951. He joined the Army from Danbury, Connecticut in 1949.
By August 26, 1951, First Lieutenant Hartell was on the ground as a forward observer with B Company, 9th Infantry Regiment at the base of Hill 700 near Kobanson-ni. Hill 700 was attacked and taken by B Company that day. But the Chinese mounted a major counterattack at 0400 hours. Hartell walked the artillery fire right up the hill on top of the charging enemy. Although many of the enemy were cut down, they just kept coming. Although wounded, he kept calling in artillery fire onto his hilltop. Finally at 0630 hours, Hartell was hit in the chest by a bullet and died.
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Sam Morningstar, author of the Combat Veterans Forum, wrote in a July 2017 commentary that the term combat veteran can be complicated.
“A military member or veteran that served in a combat zone might sometimes be called a combat veteran in certain contexts. However, some folks might have the view that an actual combat veteran is one that was directly involved in active combat while others might extend this definition a bit more,” Morningstar wrote.
O’Rourke said if Sullivan had served in combat she would have received a combat ribbon that the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard give out, and he’s demanded she produce one.
“I have never heard someone deployed to an area who didn’t fight who said they fought. You would never use that word,” said O’Rourke, who’s earned the Army Combat Action Badge.
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