by Airman Shawna L. Keyes
4th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
8/10/2015 - SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. -- Two
active-duty Airmen from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina,
along with 48 local veterans, were honored at a Purple Heart Banquet,
Aug. 7, at the First Pentecostal Holiness Church in Goldsboro.
The event honored service members from Eastern North Carolina who've
received the medal, representing every major conflict since World War
"I think this event is great," said Chief Master Sgt. John McCarthy, 4th
Aircraft Maintenance Squadron superintendent. "The Wayne County
community and everything they do for us vets, both active and retired,
The Purple Heart Medal, which was established by former President George
Washington on Aug. 7, 1782, is awarded to any member of the Armed
Forces who is wounded or killed while serving in support of contingency
McCarthy and Col. Christopher Freeman, 414th Fighter Group commander,
were honored for their service and sacrifice. Both received their medals
for injuries suffered during the attack on the Khobar Towers in Saudi
Arabia, June 25, 1996.
"I love coming to this banquet and meeting all the other vets," Freeman
said. "Whether they're from Vietnam all the way forward into (current
operations), I think it's neat to meet them and hear their stories.
That's what I enjoy about this and I also think it's awesome that
Goldsboro puts this together; it's an amazingly cool event."
Despite their injuries, both McCarthy and Freeman continue to serve in prominent leadership roles at Seymour Johnson AFB.