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U.S. Congressman Ron Paul visits Victoria

By RUBI REYES
April 8, 2009 at 7 p.m.
Updated April 7, 2009 at 11:08 p.m.

Ron Paul met with fourth- and fifth-graders at Dudley Magnet School Wednesday morning. The congressman talked about the U.S. Constitution and its importance and fielded questions from the youngsters about the economy, the Iraq war and other hot topics.

Congressman Ron Paul presented medals, ribbons and certificates to veterans for their military service. The ceremony was at the Museum of the Coastal Bend on the Victoria College campus.

Victoria County

Abelardo Delgado, U.S. Navy

Navy Good Conduct Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Benson Catchings, U.S. Coast Guard

WWII Victory Medal

American Campaign Medal

Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, four Bronze Stars

Combat Action Ribbon

Honorable Service Lapel Pin

Philippine Liberation Ribbon, two Bronze Stars

Philippine Presidential Unit Citation

Martin Garcia, U.S. Marine Corps

Purple Heart

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Service Medal

Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon

Combat Action Ribbon

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation,

with Gallantry Cross Medal Color with Palm

David Garza, U.S. Army

Air Medal

Army Commendation medal, with letter "V" device

Good Conduct Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Service Medal, with two Bronze Service Stars

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, with 1960 device

Expert Badge, with Auto Rifle Bar and Rifle Bar

Marksman Badge, with Machine Gun Bar

Army Aviation - Aircraft Crewman Badge

Frank Coopwood, U.S. Army (deceased)

his daughter Bobbie Guinn accepted

Silver Star Medal

Bronze Star Medal

Purple Heart

Good Conduct Medal

American Defense Service Medal

European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal,

with one Bronze Star

WWII Victory Medal

Combat Infantryman Badge, 1st award

Honorable Service Lapel Button, WWII

Thomas Kanak, U.S. Navy

National Defense Service Medal

Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Korea

Vietnam Service Medal, with two Bronze Stars

Korean Defense Service Medal

Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon

Combat Action Ribbon

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, with 1960 device

Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation,

with Gallantry Cross Medal Color with Palm

Willie Williams, U.S. Marine Corps

Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Service Medal, with one Bronze Star

Combat Action Ribbon,

Expert Badge, with Rifle Bar

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, with 1960 device

Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation,

with Civil Actions Medal, First Class Color with Palm

Gabriel Chapa, U.S. Marine Corps

Purple Heart

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Service Medal

Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon

Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon

Combat Action Ribbon

Expert Badge, with Rifle Bar

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, with 1960 device

Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation,

with Gallantry Cross Medal Color with Palm

Robert Swanson, U.S. Navy

Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal

Sea Service Deployment Ribbon

Good Conduct Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal

David Williamson, U.S. Army

Good Conduct Medal

Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal

WWII Victory Medal

Army of Occupation Medal, with Japan Clasp

Honorable Service Lapel Button, WWII

Marksman Badge, with Rifle Bar

Jackson County

Lester Cranek, Jr., U.S. Army Reserve

Meritorious Service Medal

Army Commendation Medal, with Large Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster

Army Achievement Medal, with Large Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster

National Defense Service Medal, with 2 Bronze Stars

Armed Forces Reserve Medal, with "M" device

Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal,

with Triple Large Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster

NCO Professional Development Ribbon, with Numeral 4

Army Service Ribbon

Expert Badge, with Rifle Bar

Sharpshooter Badge, with Auto Rifle Bar

Army Lapel Button

Global War on Terror Service

Calhoun County:

James Holesovsky, U.S. Army

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Service Medal, with two Bronze Stars

Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, with 1960 device

Expert Badge, with Rifle Bar

Lorenzo Gonzales, U.S. Army

Good Conduct Medal

American Campaign Medal

Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, with three Bronze Stars

WWII Victory Medal

Philippine Liberation Ribbon, with three Bronze Stars

Honorable Service Lapel Button WWII

Marksman Badge, with Carbine Bar

Matagorda County:

Harold Lukefahr, U.S. Navy Armed Guard

Certificate for service during WWII with the US Armed Forces as a member of the U.S. Navy Armed Guard.

U.S. Navy Armed Guard units were established during WWII in an attempt to provide defensive firepower to merchant ships in convoy or merchant ships traveling alone. Armed Guard crews of over 144,900 men served on over 6,236 American and Allied ships in every theatre of the war.

Aransas County:

Domingo Pulido, U.S. Army

His wife Irma accepted because he is overseas working.

Good Conduct Medal, with three Bronze Clasp Loops

Vietnam Service Medal

Vietnam Campaign Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm

Expert Badge, with M-16 Rifle Bar

Expert Badge, with M-14 Rifle Bar

More than 20 hands shot high into the air Wednesday morning when U.S. Congressman Ron Paul began taking questions after his presentation.

He spoke to a crowd of 50 fourth- and fifth-graders at Dudley Magnet School about the Constitution.

For fifth-grader Seth Garrett, the opportunity to meet Paul was amazing.

"I thought it was really neat that he would take the time to visit us at our school," Seth said.

The congressman explained the role of government to the students.

"He talked about the government and how sometimes they disobey the Constitution," Seth said.

Fifth-grader Lauren McCaskill was especially interested in current events.

"Hearing about the stimulus packages and recession from Ron Paul himself was interesting. I also learned more about the Constitution," Lauren said.

Paul gave each student a pocket-size booklet of the Constitution.

"I am going to read all of it. I hope to one day be a part of the government and run for office in 2032," Lauren said.

The students also learned about Paul's life before he was a congressman.

"I was a doctor and delivered babies before I was a congressman," Paul said. "I wanted to talk about politics and what I believe."

He said he wanted to emphasize the importance of the Constitution and the importance of congress to uphold the it.

"I think there are some people out there that don't take it seriously," Paul said. "Some say I read way too much into the Constitution because I'll be the only one to vote against a bill."

Fifth-grader Kevin Clark enjoyed Paul's question-and-answer session.

"He cracked a few jokes and he wasn't completely serious," Kevin said.

Paul gave the school a U.S. flag that once flew at the Capitol. He gave Principal Diane Billo a signed certificate of the giving of the flag.

Dudley was the only elementary school he visited Wednesday. He spent 30 minutes discussing the Constitution and took questions from the students.

While in Victoria, Paul also honored 15 veterans at the Coastal Bend Museum at Victoria College and visited the Golden Crescent Regional Planning Commission's Rural Transportation Department. He recently helped the transit program gain funding for new buses.

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