Charlie Crist applauds decision to award Purple Hearts to 39 soldiers injured in Iran missile attack

The news comes after a recent report revealed that the initial attack had been played down in Washington.

Rep. the United States Charlie crist applauds the news that 39 soldiers injured in an Iranian ballistic missile attack in January 2020 will receive Purple Hearts.

The Defense Ministry’s decision to reward the 39 soldiers, who were stationed at Al Asad Air Base in Iraq, comes after recent report found that the initial attack had been played down in Washington.

Although, miraculously, no deaths occurred, the soldiers suffered long-term effects from the attack, including severe headaches, vision problems and memory loss. Many servicemen who received Purple Heart almost two years after the attack were forced to leave the Armed Forces because of their injuries. Recently, a posthumous award recipient, Staff Sgt. Jason Quitugua, committed suicide after his injuries.

“The soldiers at Al Asad Air Base suffered life-changing injuries in the service of our country,” Crist said in a statement. “Giving a Purple Heart to these brave men and women is the least we can do for their sacrifice. I am grateful that our nation recognizes his sacrifice in the line of duty.

Crist also expressed concern about the traumatic brain injuries suffered by survivors, including inquiring into the status of those injured during a hearing with representatives from our defense health programs. In February 2020, Crist sent a letter to the Secretary of the Ministry of Defense Marc Esper expressing concern for the welfare of injured servicemen and asking how the Defense Department would protect them from brain damage from similar attacks in the future.

Purple Heart recipients have access to additional VA benefits, including higher priority when receiving health care, access to VA home loans, preference for federal hiring, and automatic benefits. of the GI Bill.

This week’s awards are in addition to the 23 survivors who have already received Purple Hearts, bringing the total awarded as a result of the attack to 62.

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