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Minnesota National Guard
6 inducted into Court of Honor at Camp Ripley

CAMP RIPLEY — Cpl Edmund "Butch" Motzko was all smiles Sunday as he waited for his induction into the Camp Ripley Court of Honor

"It's an honor of a lifetime," Motzko said "It's the highest honor I've ever received"

Motzko of Sauk Centre encountered the Gardelegen Atrocity of 1945 where 1,016 were killed, something he'd never forget, he said He took photos of smoldering bodies that are displayed in Holocaust museums in the US and one in Gardelegen, Germany

"We are so proud of Dad We've been waiting on this day for years," Mary Kay Keenan said of her father "I'm proud of his courage to take those pictures"

Keenan and her brother, Steve Motzko, came to support their father Sunday His wife of 62 years, JoAnn, was unable to attend the ceremony due to illness

More than 200 people attended the 2008 Court of Honor induction ceremony at Camp Ripley There were six inductees this year Joining Motzko were Lt. Col. Brevet Jack K Johnson of Stillwater, Chief Warrant Officer Leonard Posch of Little Falls, Sgt Maj Allan K Knutson of Grove City, 1st Sgt Jerome R Bentz of New Ulm and Master Sgt Charles L Farrow of Vadnais Heights The honorees have 149 years of combined service

The biannual ceremony began with the singing of the national anthem and a moment of silence for 12 fallen Soldiers Photos of the Soldiers were presented in a slide show

As each candidate's biography was read they stood on a platform with their wives and children before they received their court of honor medallion

Posch was proud of his induction He enlisted in the Minnesota National Guard in 1939 and served for 39 years and six months During his career, he served in Ireland, England, North Africa and established the Mobilization and Training Equipment Site at Camp Ripley

"What can I say? It's an honor," Posch said "I couldn't have done anything without my wife, Lydie"

Posch's brother Jim Posch nominated him for the Court of Honor

"I always want to give him recognition," he said "He spent a lot of time overseas"

Major Michael Murray admires the honorees, as not many people realize the sacrifice Soldiers make when serving

"When you talk to these men, they are very modest," Murray said "It's always an honor to recognize these guys who paved the way"

By TaLeiza Calloway, St Cloud Times
September 22, 2008

Article source: http://www.sctimes.com/

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