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Congressional Veteran Commendation

Our military men and women give so much for our freedom and liberties. In addition to their military careers, there are many veterans that also give back to our local communities.

In 2012, Congressman Flores created the TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation to honor those veterans who have served both our nation and community honorably during their military and post-military careers.

Congressman Flores is currently seeking nominations for the  2019 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation (CVC).

The TX-17 CVC honors distinguished veterans of Texas' 17th Congressional District and preserves their stories for future generations of Americans.

In order to be considered for this award, the nominee must reside in the 17th Congressional District. To determine if your nominee resides in the 17th Congressional District, please visit house.gov/representatives/find.

Nomination forms can be found by CLICKING HERE. The deadline to nominate a veteran for the 2019 CVC is Wednesday, October 31, 2019.

CVC recipients will be selected and honored during a ceremony to take place in mid-November, on or around Veterans Day (November 11, 2019).

To obtain additional information regarding the CVC contact our Waco District Office at (254) 732-0748. 

2019 NOMINATION FORM


2018 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation recipients:

Robert L. Beal, of College Station –  U.S. Marine Corps, World War II and Korean War

Clifton “Don” Beene, of Mexia – U.S. Army, Korean War. 1962-1999

Olivia W. Burnside, of College Station – U.S. Marine Corps, 1974-1987

Dr. Aaron Keith Buzzard, of Bryan – U.S. Army, Operation Iraqi Freedom

Leslie Wayne Davenport, of Rockdale – U.S. Army, Vietnam Conflict, 1967-1997

Eric Eugene Dotson, of College Station – U.S. Army, 1992-1996

Donald Freeman, of Bryan – U.S. Army, Operation Iraqi Freedom, 1985-2013

Craig George, of Bryan – U.S. Army, Operation Iraqi Freedom, 1993-2007

Daniel Riley Griffith II, of Pflugerville – U.S. Marine Corps, 1983-1989

Jerry Webb Guinn, of Waco – U.S. Air Force, Vietnam Conflict, 1970-1974

Rolando Hernandez, of Hewitt – U.S. Marine Corps, Operation Iraqi Freedom, 2000-2012

Steven Mark Hernandez, of Waco – U.S. Air Force, 1979-1985

Henry Donald Kasper, of Waco – U.S. Army, Vietnam Conflict, 1961-1981

Loren D. Kendig, of McGregor – U.S. Army, Vietnam Conflict, Operation Desert Shield, 1966-1994

Douglas Killian, of Pflugerville – U.S. Marine Corps, and U.S. Air Force Reserves, 1989-1992   

Henry W. Menefee, of Bryan – U.S. Navy, World War II

Claude L. Monk, of Tehuacana – U.S. Army Air Corps, World War II, 1942-1945

Terrence Nunn, of Bryan – U.S. Army, Operation Desert Storm

Doran Calvin Perryman, of Moody – U.S. Navy, World War II, 1944-1946

Thomas Gayle Powell, of Bryan – U.S. Navy, Vietnam Conflict; 1965-1995

John Mack Prescott, of Bryan– U.S. Army Air Corps and U.S. Air Force, World War II, 1943-1968

David Christopher Ray, of Franklin – U.S. Air Force, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom. 1997-2013

Jerry “Kean” Register, of Bryan – U.S. Army, 1985-2017

Thomas David Sather, of Marlin – U.S. Army, Vietnam Conflict, 1966-1986

Penrod Sims Thornton, of College Station – U.S. Air Force, Vietnam Conflict, 1963-1983

William P. Workman, of Bryan – U.S. Army, Vietnam Conflict


2017 TX-17 Congressional Veteran’s Commendation recipients:

Claude Gary Blair
of Bryan – U.S. Marine Corps; Vietnam War

Jonathan Cassens
of Bryan – U.S. Army

Charles “Chuck” Clark
of College Station – U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Air Force Reserve and Texas Air National Guard; Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom

Luther G. Crum, Jr.
of College Station – Korea and Vietnam Wars

Robert B. Ellis
of Bryan – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Larry E. Fikes
of Bryan – U.S. Air Force Reserve and U.S. Army Reserve; Vietnam War

Royce H. Hickman, Jr.
of College Station – U.S. Army; 1964-1970

John Carl Hince
of Bryan – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Everlyn White (Trate) Humphrey
of Bruceville – U.S. Air Force; 1981-2001

Thomas Andrew Marty
of College Station – U.S. Air Force; Lebanon and Grenada conflicts

Caton O. Milstead
of Bryan – U.S. Army; Bosnia and Kosovo conflicts, and Iraq War

Charles J. Opersteny
of Bryan – U.S. Air Force; Korean War

Miguel Orozco
of College Station – U.S. Army; Korean War

Maurice Reyes Ramon
of Waco – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Michael Lee Russell
of Woodway – U.S. Army; Bosnia conflict and Iraq War


2016 TX-17 Congressional Veteran’s Commendation recipients:

Rudy G. Cortez
of Bryan – U.S. Army; Berlin Conflict

Franklin Joe Karasek, Jr.
of Caldwell – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Kenneth Wayne Kidd
of Pflugerville – U.S. Air Force; 1976-1988

Frank J. Kocman, Jr.
of Bryan – U.S. Army; World War II and Berlin Conflict

J.D. Langley of College Station – U.S. Marine Corps; 1974-1979

James D. McDonald of Bryan – U.S. Army; Vietnam War, Panama, Grenada, Desert Shield and Desert Storm 

David P. Marion of College Station – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Rodulphe L. Peltier of College Station – U.S. Air Force; Gulf War I and II

Jason Paul Rhodes of Milano – U.S. Army; Iraq War

Gary John Urban of Lorena – U.S. Air Force; Vietnam and Desert Storm

James Arthur Wilkinson of Pflugerville – U.S. Army; Vietnam War

Phillip Zendejas of Pflugerville – U.S. Army; 1968-1970



2015 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation Recipients


Brian Keith Allen
of Pflugerville - U.S. Army; First Gulf War

Gary Mancil Banta
of Bryan - U.S. Army; Vietnam War 

Stephen C. Beachy
of College Station - U.S. Army; Cold War 

Kevin Andrew Cole
of Elm Mott- U.S. Army, Navy Reserve, Air Force Reserve; Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom

Harold Federweisch
of Riesel - U.S. Army; World War II 

Olen Hamilton
of Riesel - U.S. Army; World War II 

J
on R. Ker of Valley Mills - U.S. Army; Vietnam and Iraq Wars

George Alfred Myrick
of Bryan - U.S. Army; World War II 

Edward Newman
of Waco - U.S. Navy; World War II 

James William Savell
of Robinson - U.S. Army; Vietnam War 

Richard Lee Sechrist II
of College Station - U.S. Army; First Gulf War

Robert M Storey Jr.
of Mart - U.S. Navy; World War II  

Alfred Dale Strou
d of Caldwell - U.S. Army; Vietnam War 

Eduardo Ramirez Zamora
of Pflugerville - U.S. Army; Vietnam War 



2014 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation Recipients


George Brineger
of Waco – U.S. Army; Bosnia, Korea Defense, and Iraq

Benn Gleason of Waco – U.S. Army; World War II

Steve Gore of Pflugerville – U.S. Marine

Prince Humphries of Pflugerville – U.S. Army - Kuwait, Fallujah, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom

Kenneth Matthews of College Station – U.S.  Air Force; Vietnam War  

Bentley Nettles of College Station – Texas National Guard; Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom

Jerry Smith of College Station – U.S. Marine Corps; Korea Defense and Afghanistan War

Chris Thompson of Bryan – U.S. Army; Operation Enduring Freedom

David Tharp of Waco – U.S. Air Force Reserve; Afghanistan War 


2013 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation Recipients

Larry Bethea, Jr. of Waco – U.S. Army, Gulf War

Robert “Popeye” Carte
r of Waco – U.S. Army, Gulf War

Richard Hamblet of Pflugerville – U.S. Coast Guard, First Gulf War

Geraldine Hince of Bryan – U.S. Army, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, and First Gulf War

Henry Gonzales of Lorena – U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam War

Roy May, Jr. of College Station – U.S. Army, Iraq War

Robert Middleton of College Station – U.S. Army, Korean War

Louis Newman III of College Station – U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam War

Mike O’Bric of Woodway – U.S. Marine Corps, Korean War and Cuban Missile Crisis

Manuel Sustaita of Waco – U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam War

Bill Youngkin of Bryan – U.S. Army, Vietnam War


2012 TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation Recipients


Bill Mahon of Waco - U.S. Army, Vietnam War

Arnold Mathias of Waco - U.S. Army, World War II

Roy Kelly of College Station - U.S. Navy, World War II

Orville "Smokey" Cleveland of Burleson - U.S. Navy, Vietnam War




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June 19, 2020 Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, and Liberation Day, is an unofficial American holiday and an official Texas state holiday, celebrated annually on the 19th of June in the United States to commemorate Union army general Gordon Granger's reading of federal orders in the city of Galveston, Texas, on 19 June 1865, proclaiming all slaves in Texas were now free. Slavery had legally ended in 1863 but wasn’t announced in Galveston until 1865. Background of African Americans and Texas Politics Did you Know? • The Republican Party was formed in 1854 after the Democrats voted to protect and to extend slavery. • The 1860 Democrat platform declared its support for the Supreme Court’s infamous Dred Scott decision. • The 13th Amendment passed without a single Democrat vote in Congress for civil rights for African Americans. • The Republican Party of Texas emerged in Houston on July 4, 1867 with 150 African Americans and 20 Anglos. The same year, the Ku Klux Klan actively began to attack African Americans and Republicans. • Two of the first three statewide leaders of the Republican Party of Texas were African Americans. • The first 42 African Americans elected to the Texas Legislature were all Republicans. • From 1865-1869, Texas Democrats passed “Black Codes” to prohibit African Americans from voting, holding office, and serving on juries. They also refused to acknowledge Juneteenth and even drafted a new State constitution requiring that State Representatives and Senators only be “of the white race.” • When the Republicans gained the Texas Legislature in 1869, they established a system of free public schools to educate all the children of the State (something Democrats had refused to do) and started a Texas State Militia and a Texas State police in which African Americans proudly served. • When Democrats recaptured Texas government in 1872, Democrat Governor Richard Coke’s election was described as “the restoration of white supremacy and Democratic rule.” • Texas Democrats engaged in bizarre gerrymandering specifically to prevent African American members from being re-elected to the Legislature. When African American Republican legislator Robert L. Smith departed in 1897, no African American was elected in Texas until 1966, when the U.S. Supreme Court ordered Texas Democrats to redraw districts. • Texas Democrats enacted a poll tax that reduced African American voter turnout in Texas from 100,000 to only 5,000 and passed white-only primary laws as well as Jim Crow segregation laws. • As victims of Democrat racism and segregation, African Americans were loyal to the Republican Party they started. In fact, Republican President Herbert Hoover received more than three-fourths of the African American vote over his Democratic challenger Franklin D. Roosevelt. • Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower was the first president to appoint an African American to an executive position on the White House staff. • A higher percentage of Republican Members of Congress voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 than did Democrats. • African Americans made their most significant political and civil rights progress while affiliated with the Republican Party. Happy Juneteenth!

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Yesterday I testified before the @China_TaskForce about H.R. 6885, a bill I introduced to move our pharmaceutical s… https://t.co/wgUUimUOzg