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Former Sen. Bob Dole receives honorary Army promotion to colonel for his service in WWII


'While I'm not sure I deserve it, I remain incredibly grateful'

Alex Edelman/AFP/Getty Images

Both chambers of Congress unanimously passed legislation that promoted former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole's Army rank from captain to colonel.

"It is certainly humbling to know my friends in the Kansas delegation, Sens. Roberts and Moran and Congressman Marshall – along with Mark Milley – chose to give me an honorary promotion to the grade of colonel in the U.S. Army.

"While I'm not sure I deserve it, I remain incredibly grateful. I was proud to wear our nation's uniform 77 years ago when I enlisted, and my pride in America's brave service men and women continues today. We are the greatest and strongest nation on earth thanks to sacrifices they make each and every day," Dole tweeted in a statement Tuesday.

The 95-year-old Republican from Kansas received two Purple Hearts and he was awarded two Bronze Stars for valor for his service in World War II. In 1945, Dole was wounded by German gunfire. His injuries left him with limited use of his right arm.

Kansas lawmakers championed the legislation that passed Tuesday.

Dole represented the state of Kansas in the U.S. House and Senate for a total of 35 years. He rose to Senate majority leader in 1995 but resigned the following year to focus on his unsuccessful bid for the presidency.

What did legislators say?

Some described Dole's contributions as a "true model of public service."

"From Senator Bob Dole's time in the military and in Congress, to his continued leadership on veterans, hunger and disability issues, he is a true model of public service for Kansans and all Americans," Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) said, according to the Wichita Eagle. "It is only fitting that Senator Dole be promoted for his exemplary service and sacrifice as an Army officer and I am so pleased that this resolution is headed to the president's desk for signature."

Some applauded the House for moving quickly on the measure.

"I was so proud to see the House quickly recognize and pass this bill honoring our legendary Kansas Senator, Bob Dole. There is no one I can think of more deserving of this honorary promotion than you, @SenatorDole," Rep. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) tweeted.

What else?

Last year, Dole was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal.

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