It seems like a no-brainer.
After all, Audie Murphy received dozens of medals both before and after his death in a plane crash in 1971, including the Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, and a Silver Star. He has even received medals from France and Belgium as an infantryman. The most decorated soldier of World War II, Murphy is eligible for the Texas Legislative Medal of Honor after serving in the Texas Army National Guard and is certainly worthy of the state’s highest honor.
So why is it taking so long to award it to him?
For the third time this year, a bill is moving through the Texas Legislature that would honor Murphy. Friends, family members, supporters and law makers have all supported the move. But, each time, Gov. Rick Perry has failed to sign the bill into law.
Granted, the Texas legislature and Perry were pretty busy during the regular session and the first special section (during which Rep. Wendy Davis filibustered a bill on abortion regulations that made national news). And a spokeswoman for Perry said that, although the governor received a bill seven days before the end of the session that would have allowed the legislature to award two Medal of Honors during each session instead of one, the governor was not informed of the bill’s urgency.
Sounds like someone dropped the ball.
Last week, the Texas House of Representatives passed a bill that would bestow the award to Murphy while calling for Perry to speed up the approval process. The bill will now proceed to the Texas Senate.
Our state’s political leaders need to get this done quickly, and Hunt County residents should continue to remind both our legislators and our governor that they need to take action (visit governor.state.tx.us/contact/ for Gov. Perry’s contact information).
It seems like our political leadership could take a break from discussing roads, abortion restrictions and school funding (all very important issues, to be sure) and come together to honor one of the greatest heroes America has ever known.
In doing so, we will continue to keep the memory of Murphy alive and send a message to the other men and women who have served or will serve our nation courageously to defend our way of life: we will not forget you.
The opinion expressed here is that of the Herald-Banner’s editorial board. The board can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.