Saturday, May 20, 2017

Armed Forces Day & Never Forgotten Heroes Tyler Ziegel

metamora herald soldiers

Today, May 20th, 2017, we celebrate Armed Forces Day. This is always celebrated the third Saturday of May. This is a day to honor those women and men who serve our country and protect our freedom. We salute you all and give many thanks for your true patriotism and heroic actions. In our area we have had many young men and women fight for our country. One example is Senator Tammy Duckworth, she is the first female double amputee of Iraq war. In addition to losing her legs, she also suffered damage to her right arm.She spent many years fighting to get benefits for our Veterans that should be given to them freely. 

Another brave soldier that was cut down in his prime came from Metamora, IL. I will always remember Tyler Ziegel as I am sure many of you do. He was severely injured during the Iraq war and then came home to fight for his pay he was promised. Here is an excerpt from his Wikipedia page:

[1] After the tragedy Ziegel tried to live a socially active life. He was not able to work and United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) paid him benefits. However in 2007 Ziegel had to start a dispute with VA over the size of the monthly compensation. Instead of the expected $4000, initially he was awarded $2700, which, according to Ty, was not enough to comfortably raise a family. Then Ziegel took part in a CNN program "Special Investigations Unit", after which his financial demands were met. That program attracted attention of a wide audience: a large number of people expressed their support to Ty. Among them was a World War II veteran Hershel Williams – a retired United States Marine, who received the Medal of Honor for his actions in the Battle of Iwo Jima.The family announced that Ziegel died on December 26, 2012 after falling on ice.About 2,000 flags lined the streets of Metamora for miles in memory of Sgt. Ziegel.
In February 2013 the Governor of Illinois Pat Quinn in his State of the State address referred to the history of Ziegel as an example of the courage needed to state legislators. He said: "What we all need in this coming session is courage, real political courage to do the right thing. We don't need to look any further for examples of courage than our men and women in uniform. Men like Sergeant Tyler Ziegel, a proud Marine who grew up in Metamora, Illinois .

I will always be grateful to him and all the soldiers for the great sacrifices they make for all of us everyday. I am so sorry for his family's loss.Thank you is not enough. 


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