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Palos Heights Vietnam Veteran Presented With Delayed Bronze Star

An initial paperwork error was caught by Rep. Dan Lipinski's office and Dr. William DeRose was finally given his rightful award.

Rep. Dan Lipinski and Dr. William DeRose. Submitted Photo
Rep. Dan Lipinski and Dr. William DeRose. Submitted Photo
Last week a Palos Heights doctor was presented with the Bronze Star he earned for his service in Vietnam. 

Dr. William DeRose was an Army doctor during the Vietnam War and the initial over site was noticed by U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski's office after they made a routine request on his behalf for a copy of his military records, according to a news release.  

“I am honored to take part in this special day for Dr. DeRose and proud that my office was able to get him the Bronze Star that he earned, but never officially received after all of these years,” Rep. Lipinski said, in a news release. “Our veterans courageously served this country. As the congressman for the Third District, it is extremely important to me that they get the recognition they deserve for the sacrifices they have made on our behalf.” 

The Bronze Star is awarded for acts of merit, heroism or meritorious service in a combat zone. It is considered the fourth-highest individual military award. 

During Vietnam, DeRose was the commanding officer of the 11th Armored Calvary Regiment’s 37th Medical Company between 1967 and 1968. He left the Army as a captain and was awarded a Bronze Star by a superior officer, however the military never officially recognized the award.  

After the paperwork error was caught, DeRose was rightfully presented with the Bronze Star during a ceremony on Dec. 10 with Lipinski and Army personnel. 

DeRose retired from his Oak Lawn medical practice in 1996, and currently teaches medical students at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

He lives in Palos Heights with his wife, Henrietta. The couple has four children and three grandchildren.

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