GALLIPOLIS — After his medals were stolen six years prior, an area veteran was recently given replacement decorations and medals for his two tours of service during the Vietnam War by U.S. Congressman Bill Johnson (R-Marietta) of Ohio’s sixth congressional district at the Gallipolis VFW Post #4464.
“They bring back memories,” said Warner Cox, a veteran who served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army before being honorably discharged. “Some are pleasant and some are not…I’m proud to be an American and veteran, and if I had to do it all over again, I would. I know I’m free and I would plainly stand up again alongside you or anybody.”
Cox served two tours in Vietnam with the Army’s infantry. On the second, he was injured. He received the Purple Heart for his service as well as the Vietnam Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon and Combat Infantry Badge. He was an Army Sergeant. He served from 1964 to 1969.
Cox’s items were stolen and his son-in-law Brian Dodge along with wife and Cox’s daughter Sara Dodge made contact with The Vietnam Veterans of America Office in Jackson who then assisted him in contacted Johnson’s Office.
“I’m honored to be here this evening and this is one of the fun things that I get to do,” said Johnson. “Probably one of the most fun things I get to do…We jumped into action and it’s something we take a lot of pride in…Warner you served your nation well and we’re glad that you’re home. Welcome home.”
Johnson and Cox would share some private words along with his family after the VFW 4464 Honor Guard escorted the congressman and the decorations were transferred.
“We got a lot of issues in our country to deal with but taking care of our veterans is one of the most pleasant part of this job and I take very seriously being a 27 year veteran myself,” said Johnson.
Johnson entered the U.S. Air Force in 1973, and retired as a lieutenant colonel after a distinguished military career.