Sen. Isakson reintroduces bill honoring WWII Army Rangers

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Senator Johnny Isakson, (R-Ga.) reintroduced the Merrill’s Marauders Congressional Gold Medal Act with the support of 23 cosponsors, according to a March 15 release.

The bill, written with bipartisan support, would “bestow the Congressional Gold Medal on the 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional) in recognition of the heroic unit’s extraordinary efforts and sacrifices during World War II.”

The bill honors the 5307th Composite Unit, created Sept. 18, 1943 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and based out of Fort Benning, Ga.’s 75th Ranger Regiment. The unit was formed when President Roosevelt “called for an American Long Range Penetration Special Operations Jungle Warfare Unit.”

Known as “Merrill’s Marauders” for the unit’s first commander, Brigadier General Frank Merrill, almost 3,000 soldiers volunteered from stateside service and around the world to fill the unit’s ranks and served in the Burmese forests and mountains against Japanese forces.

The efforts of the soldiers helped to “secure victory for the Untied States in Southeast Asia” during the war.

“The bravery and sacrifice of the soldiers who volunteered to be a part of this elite group of warriors should be honored and remembered,”said Isakson, who is chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. “I’m proud that the legacy of Merrill’s Marauders lives on today at Fort Benning with the 75th Ranger Regiment, and I’m proud to reintroduce this legislation to honor Merrill’s Marauders with the Congressional Gold Medal.”

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