President’s character questioned by mourning parent

WASHINGTON, Jan. 11 (AP)–A father of two sons killed in Korea said today he refused to accept the Medal of Honor on the ground that President Truman is unworthy to bestow it “on my boys or anyone’s boys.”

The 65-year-old father, Halsey McGovern, said he based his objection on Mr. Truman’s “record” and the fact that he doesn’t believe in the idea of awards for heroism.

“Boys are dying by the thousands,” McGovern told newsmen. “Perhaps some receiving awards for their gallantry did not measure up to some whose deeds went unnoticed.”

The tall, white-haired father said he not only rejected the Medal of Honor awarded posthumously to one of his sons but also the Silver Star awarded to another.

“I don’t want any part of it,” he said, “if it infers that Truman is a proper person to honor these boys and other boys who died over there.”

from “Heroes’ Father Rejects Medals—‘Truman Unworthy'”; San Francisco Chronicle; January 12, 1952; page 1.

Learn more about the valor of the McGovern brothers.

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