1st Battalion 22nd Infantry
Veteran of C 1-22 Inducted into the Hall of Valor
March 29, 2011
Veterans of Foreign Wars
Post 914 "Intrepid" member Spc. Vincent Hoover, left,
is awarded the Silver Star for valor by Major General John W. Morgan in October 2009.
On March 29, 2011,
Specialist Vincent Hoover,
For these actions SPC
West Mifflin soldier headed to
Hall of Valor
Thursday, March 24, 2011
By Dave Zuchowski
While serving in the Air Force by working on airplane electronics in Panama City, Fla., Vincent Hoover felt he wasn't doing
enough for his country. He decided to become a more active combatant and transferred from the Air Force to the Army
via the Blue-to-Green program in 2006. He soon saw active duty in Iraq, an experience that tested his mettle.
A resident of West Mifflin, Spc. Hoover was assigned to C Company, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment and left Fort Hood,
Texas, for a 12-month deployment in March 2008 to support Operation Iraqi Freedom. Ten months later, in late January 2009,
he and his four-vehicle convoy were driving along a section of southwest Baghdad when enemy troops threw a cylindrical
metal object into his Humvee, which bounced off his chest, then landed on the bottom of his turret.
Reacting quickly, he immediately grabbed what turned out to be a grenade and threw it to the left of his convoy,
while shouting for his driver to move the vehicle. Within seconds, the grenade exploded, and everyone felt the impact of the shock.
There were no injuries.
For his quick thinking and heroic action, Spc. Hoover, 24, has received the Silver Star, the nation's third-highest military decoration
that is awarded to a member of the armed forces for valor in face of the enemy. He received the medal Oct. 20, 2009,
from Maj. Gen. John W. Morgan at a ceremony at Camp Casey's Indian Head Field in South Korea, where he's now stationed
as a tanker with the 1st Battalion, 72nd Armor Regiment, 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team.
"He never told any of his family about either the grenade or the Silver Star," said Terri Gasser, the soldier's mother,
in a phone interview from the Davis-Montham Air Force Base in Tuscon, Ariz., where she is visiting her daughter,
Kayla Hoover, a senior airman.
"He didn't tell me about the grenade because he didn't want me to worry about him being in Iraq," she said. "He didn't tell his family
about the Silver Star because he shies away from that sort of thing. He didn't even tell two of his fellow soldiers in the Humvee
now stationed with him in Korea that he'd received the Silver Star, although they eventually heard about the medal elsewhere."
Mrs. Glasser called her ex-husband Mitchell Hoover, who lives in Indiana, to share their son's honors.
"Mitchell was also in the Army, so he was especially proud," Mrs. Glasser said.
At 2 p.m. Tuesday, Spc. Hoover will be inducted into the Joseph A. Dugan Jr. Hall of Valor at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall
& Museum in Pittsburgh. Spc. Hoover's mother will accept the plaque because her son is unable to attend.
Mr. Hoover also hopes to attend.
Spc. Hoover, a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 914 'Intrepid' in West Mifflin, will be the first member of the post
inducted into the Hall of Valor, which has been honoring military men and women who have received medals for acts of valor
during combat for the past 50 years.
"I'm very, very proud of my son and the man he is," Mrs. Glasser said. "Our soldiers deploy so much and have to put their lives on hold.
It's a hard life, and I thank him for what he's doing for the nation."
Dave Zuchowski, freelance writer; email@example.com.
First published on March 24, 2011 at 5:55 am
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11083/1134276-55.stm#ixzz1IwF3NVU1
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11083/1134276-55.stm#ixzz1IwEuJZEM
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