March 25 was Medal of Honor Day, and a small group of veterans from American Legion Mountaineer Post 174 in Morgantown, W.Va., commemorated two Medal of Honor recipients who are buried in East Oak Grove Cemetery. A brief service was held at the grave of Civil War veteran Levi Shomaker. It began with an invocation by Rev. Tony Setley and proceeded with a reading of both award citations by Post 174 Commander Matthew Sampson.
Shomaker received the Medal of Honor for his actions at Nineveh, Va., in the Shenandoah Valley on November 12, 1864, during which he captured the flag of the 22nd Virginia Cavalry.
Morgantown native Thomas Bennett received a posthumous Medal of Honor for his valor in Vietnam during the period of Feb. 9-11, 1969. He distinguished himself as a medic, repeatedly exposing himself to intense enemy fire to render life-saving first aid to wounded soldiers and then carrying them to safety. Bennett was mortally wounded while attempting to reach a wounded soldier in a forward position under heavy enemy grazing fire.
The ceremony ended with the placement of a Medal of Honor flag at each grave.