In Memory of Fred Stolleyby Representative Rodney Davis
Posted on 2015-02-05
DAVIS of Illinois asked and was given permission to
address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
Mr. RODNEY DAVIS of Illinois. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor the
life of a great man and a great soldier.
In 2013, I had the honor of meeting Fred Stolley and presenting him with the Soldier's Medal, the highest honor a servicemember can receive for an act of valor in a noncombat situation.
Private First Class Stolley proudly served his country during World War II; and in 1944, he saved a fellow soldier from drowning. Stolley's commanding officer wrote a commendation letter praising him for saving the soldier who was twice his size and deeply troubled by the devastating news of losing his brother in combat.
After the war ended, Stolley returned home to Decatur, Illinois. He worked nights, weekends, and, between classes, building houses and hauling water to graduate from my alma mater, Millikin University, with a degree in business.
Out of respect for the soldier he saved, Stolley never requested a medal to recognize his act of heroism, but 70 years later, my office was able to present him with the medal in front of his family and friends.
This week, we lost a hero. Fred Stolley passed away at the age of 90.
It is because of people like him and all of our men and women in uniform that we are able to enjoy the freedoms that we have today.
My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as they lay him to rest in Decatur this afternoon.