|General Myers receives Presidential Medal of Freedom |
by Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
11/10/2005 - WASHINGTON (AFPN) -- President
George Bush presented retired Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers the
Presidential Medal of Freedom during a White House ceremony today.
Myers, who stepped down as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Sept.
30, was one of 14 Americans honored with the nation's highest civilian
President Bush praised the general for his efforts that
helped free 50 million people in Afghanistan and Iraq. The president
said General Myers took office less than a month after the Sept. 11,
2001, attacks, "and he was the right man for the job."
chairman, the general served as the principal military adviser to the
president and the rest of the National Security Council.
Myers was a source of wisdom, clear analysis and broad vision," the
president said. "As chairman, he helped design a thorough and
innovative strategy for victory in the war on terror."
president also praised the general for his role in transforming the
American military to confront the threats of the present and future.
Bush called General Myers a model officer who retired after more than
40 years in uniform. He said Myers was always "deliberate, unflinching
and calm in a storm."
General Myers left the service with "four stars on his shoulder and his place in American history secure," the president said.
president also awarded the medal to three-time heavyweight boxing
champion Muhammad Ali, actress and comedian Carol Burnett, Internet
pioneers Vinton Cerf and Robert Kahn, historian Robert Conquest, singer
Aretha Franklin, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, actor Andy
Griffith, broadcaster Paul Harvey, former U.S. Rep. Sonny Montgomery,
golfer Jack Nicklaus, baseball hall-of-famer and Washington Nationals
manager Frank Robinson and Paul Rusesabagina, who rescued thousands
from genocide in Rwanda.
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is
in the form of a golden star with white enamel, with a red enamel
pentagon behind it. The central disc bears 13 white enamel stars on a
blue enamel background -- taken from the crest of the U.S. coat-of-arms
-- within a golden ring. Golden American eagles stand between the arms
of the star. It is worn on a blue ribbon with white edge stripes around