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Latest Member: SalpetL Forum  |  Movies  |  Press Releases and Film News  |  147 years later, Wis. Civil War soldier gets medal « previous next »
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B-Movie Kraken

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Either he's dead or my watch has stopped!

« on: May 19, 2010, 04:59:08 PM »

147 years later, Wis. Civil War soldier gets medal 

DELAFIELD, Wis. – Seven score and seven years ago, a wounded Wisconsin soldier stood his ground on the Gettysburg battlefield and made a valiant stand before he was felled by a Confederate bullet.

Now, thanks to the dogged efforts of modern-day supporters, 1st Lt. Alonzo Cushing shall not have died in vain, nor shall his memory have perished from the earth.

Descendants and some Civil War history buffs have been pushing the U.S. Army to award the soldier the Medal of Honor, the nation's highest military decoration. They'll soon get their wish.

Secretary of the Army John McHugh has approved their request, leaving a few formal steps before the award becomes official this summer. Cushing will become one of 3,447 recipients of the medal, and the second from the Civil War honored in the last 10 years.

It's an honor that's 147 years overdue, said Margaret Zerwekh. The 90-year-old woman lives on the land in Delafield where Cushing was born, and jokes she's been adopted by the Cushing family for her efforts to see Alonzo recognized.

"I was jumping up and down when I heard it was approved," said Zerwekh, who walks with two canes. "I was terribly excited."

Cushing died on July 3, 1863, the last day of the three-day battle of Gettysburg. He was 22...

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B-Movie Kraken

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« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2010, 05:39:06 PM »

Sounds like it was certainly earned.  May he rest in peace!

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« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2010, 04:03:28 PM »

I did a little research into the subject, and I found that Lt. Alonzo Cushing's 1st Sgt. Frederick Fuger was awarded the Medal of Honor for the same action, which makes you wonder why it took so long to award the same medal to Cushing.

But Lt. Alonzo Cushing was not the only hero in the Cushing family. Because my father was in the U.S. Navy, I was more familiar with the heroics of Cushing's younger brother Navy Lt. William B. Cushing, who . . .

Now, for most of the Civil War, the port of Plymouth, North Carolina was in the hands of the North. Till 1864, when it was recaptured by the South, with the aid of the ironclad CSS Albermarle. Of course, the North wanted the port back, but they couldn't see any way this would happen, as long as the South had the CSS Albermarle, which was the dominant warship in that area.

That was when Lt. William B. Cushing came up with the idea of taking the Civil War equivalent of a P.T. boat up the Roanoke River, where the CSS Albermarle was moored, and sink it with a spar torpedo, which was actually more like a mine attrached to a spar than a torpedo.

His idea worked all too well. Not only did he sink the enemy ship, but his ship as well in the ensuing explosion. He and one other man being the only two men not killed or captured by the enemy.

But, such was his heroism that the Congress offically awarded him their thanks for what he had done. And yes, with the CSS Albermarle being sunk, the North once more gained
control of Plymouth.

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