First Special Service Force: Time to Honor Them

It’s nice to see Congress once again working toward honoring the First Special Service Force. The First Special Service Force was a joint World War II American-Canadian unit that fought during World War II. They trained at Fort Harrison near Helena, Montana.

In the short time this unit was active they kicked butt around the world.

Interstate 15 in Montana and Alberta Highway 4 from Helena to Lethbridge, Alberta Canada, was named the “First Special Service Force Memorial Highway” back in September 1999. There are signs along the route.

Congress is working toward legislation that would grant the Congressional Gold Medal for the unit. The U.S. House passed the bill (H.R. 324) yesterday by a 415-0 vote, which included Montana’s Representative, Steve Daines.

Getting 415 votes in the U.S. House on any bill is pretty historical these days.

U.S. Senators Max Baucus and Jon Tester both support a related bill (S. 789) in the Senate and it has 30 supporters. Congressional Gold Medal bills need 67 Senators to sign on before they can be voted on by the full Senate, according to a press release from Tester.

I applaud Baucus, Tester, and Daines for their work and support of this issue.

Back in 2012 during the 112th Congress, a similar movement failed with only 29 senators signing on as supporters of the bill.

There are only a few living members of the First Special Service Force today. With Memorial Day approaching, it would be nice to see the United States Senate pass the legislation to honor these brave men. I know it’s doubtful that anything will be accomplished before Memorial Day, but with the U.S. House voting 415-0 to honor these heroes, stranger things have happened.


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