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January 7, 2014

Funds being raised to help Chihuahua family

THOMASVILLE — Funds are being raised to send a military family and Army friends to a fallen hero’s Silver Star ceremony.

On Nov. 12, 2010, Specialist “Doc” Shannon Chihuahua of Thomasville at the age of 25, gave his life for his brothers in arms while serving as a medic with the 101st Airborne Division in Kunar Province, Afghanistan. He was tending to a wounded soldier.

After graduating from Thomas Central High School, he joined the Army in July 2008 and arrived at Fort Campbell in July 2009. Chihuahua was a combat nedic assigned to Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault).

His awards and decorations include the Purple Heart; Army Commendation Medal; Army Achievement Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Afghanistan Campaign Medal; Global War on Terrorism Service Medal; Army Service Ribbon; NATO Medal; and Combat Medic Badge.

Nearly four years after his death, Chihuahua will be awarded the Silver Star, the nation’s third-highest award, posthumously at Fort Campbell (Ky.) on Feb. 7.

The Silver Star honors personnel who display exceptional valor while engaged in military combat operations against an enemy force. Personnel can also be honored for their service with friendly foreign troops in combat situations.

Many of his family and former Army friends are scattered throughout the United States and desire to attend the ceremony. Chihuahua’s widow, Kristen Chihuahua, came up with the idea of selling shirts to help the family raise money to go to Kentucky. Their goal is to sell 150 shirts. They have sold 138 within the past six days. Also, if donors would like to submit monetary donations, they can do so through GoFundMe.com.

“It is so important to me that Shannon’s family and brother soldiers be there as he receives the Silver Star. Me and our daughters, Sophia, 6, and Annabelle, 3, are so proud of him,” said Kristen Chihuahua.  “His bravery and honor shines through the eyes of his brother soldiers that were beside him and witnessed his heroic actions on that day. It means more that I could ever say that our whole family is able to come together as he is given this award he earned with his life.”

The funds raised will go to the cost to his family so they can all be present at his award ceremony. One hundred percent of the proceeds will help Chihuahua’s mom, dad, brothers and sisters.

SSG Payten E. Redfearn of the SE Chaplain Recruiting Team who has been helping Chihuahua’s wife and sister promote their award ceremony trip fundraiser, said, “This is a huge deal. The Silver Star is the third-highest military medal. It can only be given for exceptionally brave actions in combat.

“In my 11 years of serving, two and a half of which were served in a combat zone, I’ve never met a Silver Star recipient. While I know there are some out there, there can’t be very many.”

To help raise funds, pvisit www.gofundme.com/5xchh4 or go to www.booster.com/shannonchihuahua.com to buy a shirt for $25, which will also be donated to the family.

 



 

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Pictured from left are Wilma Kelley, DAR Membership Committee, Thomasville Chapter NSDAR; Florence Harrell, Charlotte Brown, Carol Lehman and Cheryl Mills, new DAR members of the Thomasville Chapter NSDAR; and Melody Porter, DAR registrar, Thomasville Chapter NSDAR.

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