The U.S. Senate on Tuesday passed H.R.8276, a bill to allow U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn Cashe to receive the Medal of Honor by waiving a five-year time limit on when the highest U.S. military honor can be awarded. The measure now goes to President Donald Trump and awaits his signature decision.
Cashe risked his own life to save fellow soldiers trapped in a burning vehicle after an improvised explosive device (IED) attack in Samara, Iraq on Oct. 17, 2005. He was not injured in the initial IED blast, but he braved enemy gunfire to return to the burning vehicle to rescue six soldiers, accumulating second- and third-degree burns across 70 percent of his body. Cashe died from his wounds 22 days later on Nov. 8, 2005, and was later recognized with a Silver Star.
On Tuesday, Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX), a former U.S. Navy SEAL who cosponsored the legislation, said, “We are one step closer to properly recognizing Sergeant First Class Alwyn Cashe for his bravery in risking his own life to save his fellow soldiers. He is deserving of the Medal of Honor, our nation’s highest military award for bravery on the battlefield, and we urge President Trump to quickly sign our bill into law to make sure that happens.”
Crenshaw sponsored the legislation alongside Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) and Rep. Michael Waltz (R-FL).
Murphy, said Tuesday, “I am so grateful the Senate passed our bill to pave the way for the President to award Alwyn Cashe the Medal of Honor. We are now very close to recognizing this unbelievably heroic soldier, who died saving his men, with our nation’s highest award for combat valor—which he earned beyond a shadow of a doubt.”
The Senate passage of the legislation comes after the House passed the legislation on Sept. 22 of this year.
Rep. Michael Waltz (R-FL), a former U.S. Army Green Beret who also cosponsored the legislation said, “It’s not every day you read an extraordinary story like Alwyn Cashe’s. His bravery in the face of danger has inspired so many already—and this is a significant step forward to properly recognize him for his heroism. I’m incredibly proud to see both sides of the aisle, in the House and the Senate, come together to honor Cashe’s legacy and award him the Medal of Honor.”
The call for Cashe to receive the Medal of Honor has received popular support and in September Army Ranger turned NFL player Alejandro Villanueva began wearing Cashe’s name on his helmet during the football season.