INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WTTV) — Gov. Eric Holcomb will award Indiana’s highest honor Monday to a Vietnam veteran and Congressional Medal of Honor recipient.
Sammy L. Davis of Freedom will receive the 2018 Sachem Award during a 10 a.m. ceremony at the Indiana War Memorial.
Davis was near the South Vietnamese city of Cai Lay in 1967 when his unit came under fire. He was wounded, but took over a burning artillery piece and fired off several rounds at the Viet Cong. He then used an air mattress to cross a river and rescue wounded before joining another unit with a howitzer to continue fighting.
Davis broke his back, but continued serving in the Army until 1984. His actions inspired those of the lead character in Forrest Gump.
The 71-year-old joins a distinguished group of Sachem winners, including Holocaust survivor Eva Mozes Kor and late Notre Dame President Theodore Hesburgh.
Davis has also been awarded a Silver Star, Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross and Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. He was among veterans who appeared at the coin toss at Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis.