COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) – A former Fort Benning commander and a former U.S. senator are among the 17 veterans to be inducted Saturday evening into the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame.
The inductees will be honored at the Fourth Annual Georgia Military Hall of Fame Ceremony and Banquet at 6 p.m. Saturday at the St. Luke Ministry Center in Uptown Columbus.
Retired Army Lt. Gen. Carmen James Cavezza of Columbus was a Company Commander in Vietnam on January 2, 1966. Cavezza led his men during a six-hour battle with the enemy force, despite being wounded three times.
Cavezza has a total of six combat awards, one of those being a Purple Heart.
After serving 33 years in the U.S. Army, Cavezza served in numerous civilian roles for the city of Columbus and currently serves as the Chairman, CEO of the National Infantry Foundation.
Former U.S. Sen. Max Cleland of Atlanta volunteered for duty in Vietnam. In 1968, Cleland was seriously injured resulting in him becoming a triple amputee.
Cleland went on to serve the State of Georgia for more than 30 years in numerous political offices, including being a U.S. Sen. from 1997-2002.
Cleland has a total of three combat awards.
The purpose of the Hall of Fame is to honor Georgia Military Veterans, educate Georgia citizens of the sacrifices for freedom, and to inform the public of the inductee's outstanding accomplishments.
2016 GMVHOF include John David Blair, Earl Fredrick Burke, Carmen James Cavezza, Paul Randy Cheatwood, Joseph Maxwell Cleland, Donnie Lee Cochran, Michael Patrick Dover, Ray McKibben, Burton Dewayne Patrick, Horace Richard Pearl, Philip Leslie Spackman, Donna Curtis Rowe, Shelton Beverly Sutton, Jr., Clyde A. Thomason, Dewey Wayne Waddell, Curtis Clay Williamson, and Charles Douglas Windham, Jr.
Click here to view a feature profile of the 2016 inductees. Including those inducted tonight, there are a total 66 inductees in the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame.
The annual event is opened to the public. Tickets are $55; click here to purchase.