Former Perry man to accept Congressional Gold Medal

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First Sgt. Gerald L. Hill and Master Sgt. Essie Mae Thompson Hill, seen here in a November 1943 family photo in their Civil Air Patrol uniforms, will posthumously receive the Congressional Gold Medal in a Feb. 23 ceremony of the Maryland Wing of the Civil Air Patrol in Baltimore.

Retired U.S Naval Reserve Capt. George J. Hill will accept the Congressional Gold Medal Feb. 23 in honor of his father and mother.

Dr. George J. Hill of Baltimore, who attended Perry High School with the Class of 1949, will accept the Congressional Gold Medal in honor of his father and mother, Gerald and Essie Mae Hill, who were members of the Civil Air Patrol in World War II.

The posthumous awards for 1st Sgt. Gerald L. Hill and Master Sgt. Essie Mae Thompson Hill will be bestowed Feb. 23 by the Maryland Wing of the Civil Air Patrol in a ceremony at the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Episcopal) at 4 E. University Parkway in Baltimore.

The Congressional Gold Medal, bestowed by the U.S. Congress, was first issued during the American Revolution to honor military figures, and the practice was later extended to individuals in all walks of life. The Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom are the highest civilian awards in the U.S.

Dr. Hill attended Perry High School in the ninth grade with the Class of 1949. He retired as a Captain in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Naval Reserve after 25 years of service. Hill previously served in the Marine Corps Reserve for two years and in the U.S. Public Health Service Reserve for eight years — a total of 35 years, with active duty in the Korean War period, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam and the First Gulf War.

A reception following the ceremony will be held at the home of Dr. Hill two blocks from the cathedral. For more information, contact Dr. Hill at captgjh@yahoo.com or 973-610-4631, or visit his website.

The Congressional Gold Medal, bestowed by the U.S. Congress, was first issued during the American Revolution to honor military figures, and the practice was later extended to individuals in all walks of life. The Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom are the highest civilian awards in the U.S.

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