WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI), and Congressman Fred Upton (MI-06) today announced legislation to make James C. McCloughan eligible for our nation’s highest military honor – the Medal of Honor - for his acts of heroism and valor during the Vietnam War. Then-Private First Class McCloughan, a native and current resident of South Haven, served as a medic and saved the lives of 10 members of his platoon who were wounded during the Battle of Nui Yon Hill on May 13-15, 1969. Then-Private First Class McCloughan was discharged with the rank of Specialist (SP5).
“Nearly 50 years ago, Private First Class James McCloughan acted heroically to save the lives of his fellow service members, and it’s time that he finally receives the recognition he deserves,” said Senator Stabenow. “We are deeply grateful for his heroism and service to our country.”
"Private First Class James McCloughan acted without regard to his own safety to treat and rescue his fellow servicemembers in the heat of battle,” said Senator Peters, a former Lt. Commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve. "His heroism and dedication are deserving of our nation’s highest military honor, and I thank him for his service and sacrifice.”
"Private First Class James McCloughan is an American hero - there is no doubt about that," said Congressman Upton. "And after 50 years, it's time he finally receives the highest recognition for the deeds that made him a hero. Private First Class McCloughan is one of my constituents here in Southwest Michigan, and I'm honored to be joining the fight with our Senators to get this done for him and his family."
Medal of Honor recipients must be honored within five years of the act of heroism justifying the award. The Department of Defense recently recommended that James McCloughan receive this honor. This legislation waives the five year requirement and when signed into law, will make it possible for the President to award the Medal of Honor to him.
Private First Class McCloughan was highly decorated receiving the Combat Medical Badge, two Purple Hearts, two Bronze Stars with “V” device for valor, The U. S. Army Valorous Unit Citation, The National Defense Medal, The Good Conduct Medal, The Vietnam Service Medal with three battle stars, The Vietnam Campaign Medal, The Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with palms and one oak leaf cluster and the M16 Expert Rifle Badge.