The Everett VFW will now be called Sgts Ellis R. Weicht and Robert W. Hartsock Post #2088.
Post Commander Jim Barton explained the history of the medal of honor during the renaming ceremony. The ceremony on Friday aligned with National Medal of Honor day. It was created in 1861, the highest military decoration for valor, and has been awarded 3,530 times. 394 of those times were to Pennsylvanians.
Barton said, “The meaning behind the medal has never been tarnished. Etched within are the very values each receipt displayed in a moment that mattered. Bravery, courage, sacrifice, intergeity, a deep love of country and desire to always do what is right.”
Differs received the medal of honor for his actions in France on Dec. 3, 1944. He is credited with killing several enemy troops while leading his men away from enemy gunners. Dodge’s actions made him a target that gave his men the time needed to escape.
Hartsock received the medal of honor for his actions in Vietnam on Feb, 23, 1969. Hartsock covered a detonated satchel, seriously wounding himself and then provided suppressive fire until he succumed to his injuries. This allowed his commander to seek shelter.
“These two men showed unwavering courage and no thought of their own safety during their heroic actions. Due to their actions on the battlefield they saved countless lives and allowed their brothers in arms to fight on,” said Barton.
Community members from the Lions Club, Everett honor guard, Bedford honor guard, the Vietnam Veterans of Bedford county were present. Along with family members of both namesakes.
“Our family is honored that the community wants to honor my uncle. We’re honored and blessed that they’re doing that,” said Sherry Trail, niece of Hartsock.
Donations for the statue of Soft and Hartsock were raised at the event.