Why The Soldier Killed In Orlando Could Receive A Purple Heart

Army photo

The Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, witnessed the worst mass shooting in U.S. history on June 12. Among the 49 killed in what the the White House and the Justice Department have deemed an act of terrorism, is Army Reserve Capt. Antonio D. Brown.

Now, the Army will decide if Brown will receive a Purple Heart, the medal reserved for U.S. service members killed or wounded in actions against the enemy.

According to Army Times, Army spokesman Lt. Col. Jerry Pionk said the branch “will need the facts and clarifications from law enforcement to make future determination.”

This Marine Veteran Saved Dozens In Orlando Nightclub Shooting

There is, however, precedent for awarding the Purple Heart in cases of military personnel shootings, as well as international acts of terrorism.

Earlier this year, Airman Spencer Stone received the medal after subduing a gunmen and being stabbed in the Paris, France attack perpetrated by the Islamic State. Stone was on vacation in Europe at the time, and like Brown, was not operating in a military capacity.

In addition, the military personnel killed in the Chattanooga and Fort Hood attacks led officials to look at the valor awards process. As a result, four Marines and one sailor were given Purple Hearts posthumously after the Chattanooga shooting — an attack that was determined to be inspired by al Qaeda.

In 2014, the National Defense Authorization Act also added a section to federal law that allows the military branches to award Purple Hearts to those injured or killed in an attack made by a foreign terrorist organization.

Authorities are still investigating Orlando shooter Omar Mir Seddique Mateen relationship with the Islamic State. However, he did call 911 to pledge allegiance to the terrorist group in the midst of the attack.

The fact that Brown was off duty and out of uniform may still factor into the Army’s decision to award him a Purple Heart, however. Regardless, the Army will likely not be able to rule on the issue until police investigations have ended.

It is impossible to tune out news about the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump now that the hearings have become public. And this means that cable news networks and Congress are happier than pigs in manure: this story will dominate the news for the foreseeable future unless Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt get back together.

But the wall-to-wall coverage of impeachment mania has also created a news desert. To those of you who would rather emigrate to North Korea than watch one more lawmaker grandstand for the cameras, I humbly offer you an oasis of news that has absolutely nothing to do with Washington intrigue.

Read More Show Less

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia will return three captured naval ships to Ukraine on Monday and is moving them to a handover location agreed with Kiev, Crimea's border guard service was cited as saying by Russian news agencies on Sunday.

A Reuters reporter in Crimea, which Russian annexed from Ukraine in 2014, earlier on Sunday saw coastguard boats pulling the three vessels through the Kerch Strait toward the Black Sea where they could potentially be handed over to Ukraine.

Read More Show Less

There's a joke that Joey Jones likes to use when he feels the need to ease the tension in a room or in his own head.

To calm himself down, he uses it to remind himself of the obstacles he's had to overcome. When he faces challenges today — big or small — it brings him back to a time when the stakes were higher.

Jones will feel out a room before using the line. For nearly a decade, Jones, 33, has told his story to thousands of people, given motivational speeches to NFL teams and acted alongside a three-time Academy Award-winning actor.

On Tuesday afternoon, he stood at the front of a classroom at his alma mater, Southeast Whitfield High School in Georgia. The room was crowded with about 30 honor students.

It took about 20 minutes, but Jones started to get more comfortable as the room warmed up to him. A student asked about how he deals with post-traumatic stress disorder.

"I believe in post-traumatic growth," Jones said. "That means you go through tough and difficult situations and on the back end through recovery, you learn strength."

Read More Show Less

It didn't take long for a central theme to emerge at the funeral of U.S. Marine Pfc. Joseph Livermore, an event attended by hundreds of area residents Friday at Union Cemetery in Bakersfield.

It's a theme that stems from a widespread local belief that the men and women who have served in the nation's armed forces are held in particularly high esteem here in the southern valley.

"In Bakersfield and Kern County, we celebrate our veterans like no place else on Earth," Bakersfield Chief of Police Lyle Martin told the gathering of mourners.

Read More Show Less

An Air Force Special Tactics combat controller that "delivered thousands of pounds of munition" during a close-range 2007 firefight in Afghanistan was awarded the Silver Star on Friday.

Read More Show Less