Former Rep. Ike Skelton honored by The American Legion
Former U.S, Rep. Isaac Newton "Ike" Skelton received The American Legion's 2012 Patriot Award at the organization's annual national convention in Indianapolis today.
"We don't always agree with Congress, which is why it is so important for us to recognize those who have been good to us," American Legion National Commander Fang A. Wong said. "Although he is no longer in that body, he is still our friend – a member that has always been there for us during his 34 years of service in the House of Representatives."
Skelton, a Democrat, represented Missouri's 4th Congressional District for 17 terms. He has served as a chairman and a ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee. Urged to run for Congress by former President Harry S. Truman, he told colleagues "Protecting our nation from direct attack is job one."
"It is one of the highest honors I have ever received...to be recognized for the work I've done in Congress by this leading organization in America, The American Legion," Skelton said. "The fact that my father belonged to the Legion makes this award even more special."
"You were a strong supporter of military pay increases and sought to increase the size of the U.S. Naval fleet," Skelton's Patriot Award citation states. "By repeatedly voting for the flag protection amendment, you sent a message that the Flag of the United States should be respected and that desecration of this symbol of our country is wrong. The numerous accolades that you have received from veterans are indicative of the commitment that you have demonstrated to those who have served in America's Armed Forces and their families. On behalf of the 2.4 million wartime veterans of The American Legion, thank you for your service to this nation and for being a staunch advocate for America's military."