LSU Alumnus Heyward G. Jeffers III Recognized as 2013 Distinguished Military Honor Award Winner
For the second year in a row the Baton Rouge Chapter of the Folds of Honor Foundation honors an LSU alumnus with award
BATON ROUGE – The Folds of Honor Foundation recently announced the winner of the 2013 Distinguished Military Honor Award, and for the second year in a row, the honor goes to an LSU alumnus: Heyward G. Jeffers III, of Baton Rouge.
This award honors a life of service to the country and state and is in memory of fallen Louisiana military hero, Staff Sgt. William Austin Daniel. The Distinguished Military Honor Award is presented annually to a Louisiana military member or veteran who supports the betterment and welfare of other military members, veterans, and/or their community.
After graduating from Baton Rouge High, Jeffers enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1967, where he completed basic training at Ft. Polk, La. From there he trained as a communication specialists at Ft. Gordon, Ga. At the height of the Vietnam War, he then was deployed to Pleiku City, South Vietnam, from 1968-1969. While serving in Vietnam, he was promoted to Communications Sergeant on Advisory Team 36. He was once part of a rescue team that recovered three badly wounded medical personnel during attacks on Pleiku on Aug. 23, 1968. All three wounded survived. During a year of combat operations, serving as an Infantry radio man, he assisted in calling in artillery support fire, airstrikes, and medical evacuations while engaged directly with enemy forces.
Jeffers finished his military service in 1971 at Ft. Rucker, Ala., as a member of E Company, LRRP, 30th Infantry Regiment; training Warrant Officers in helicopter school. His military awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal with four Bronze Campaign Service Stars, the Vietnamese Gallantry Cross with Bronze Star for Valor, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, and the Combat Infantryman Badge.
After his military service, he returned to Baton Rouge and received a degree from LSU in journalism in August 1973. After graduating from college, he went to work for the Associated Press Wire Service, covering Capitol politics. Later he joined the Senate staff in 1981 as the public information officer and worked 12 years in that role, before earning a Juris Doctor in 1992 from Southern University Law Center and beginning a career as a Senate staff attorney.
Jeffers not only served his country honorably, but he continues to give of himself to veterans, fallen heroes, and also the Gold Star Families. Heyward handles Veterans Affairs for the Louisiana Senate. Since 2005, he has written resolutions honoring the fallen each year.
Heyward has served most of his life to ensure that those who have served this great nation will forever be remembered, by name, for their great act of selflessness in service to our country. To date, more than 150 heroes and their families have been honored by through these resolutions.
He is also the writer of many legislative bills that positively affect veterans and their families, including working successfully to help pass better “death and disability” benefits. Additionally, he has worked to help veterans in the areas of finance, education and housing. He has worked with Blue Star Mothers and Gold Star Families to honor and recognize a whole new generation of armed forces personnel terrorism in the Middle East and all across the globe.
He considers his service in the military to be a life defining event. Jeffers shared, “Much was expected of me, so I worked harder at achieving the jobs and responsibilities given to me. I am proud to have served, and I am honored to have been part of a team of some of the finest soldiers in the world. I am happy to have survived combat, and I continue to use many of the lessons I learned there, even in my civilian job today.”
He credits his wife of 28 years, Dianne, with helping him keep his focus in all aspects of life and keeping everything in perspective including his first grandchild, Nadene Evelyn, the first child of his son, Stephen, and his wife, Kristyn.
Jeffers will be recognized and honored at the Annual Folds of Honor Patriot Awards Ceremony, Oct. 20. In addition, he will be presented a special patriotic painting by renowned artist Tony Bernard, donated by the family of Staff Sgt. William Austin Daniel.
The Folds of Honor is proud to honor a Louisiana veteran and true “unsung hero” in Jeffers as the 2013 Distinguished Military Honor Award. For more information, contact Frank Gumpert at 225-819-0800 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Folds of Honor Foundation
The Folds of Honor Foundation is rallying a nation to ensure no family is left behind in the fight to preserve American freedom. Through scholarships and other assistance, the Folds of Honor Foundation gives back to the spouses and children of soldiers killed or disabled in service to our country. They provide healing, hope and an opportunity for dreams to be realized. To learn more about the Folds of Honor Foundation, visit www.foldsofhonor.org.