Why Airman Spencer Stone Deserves the Silver Star

Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone at the US embassy in Paris, France / AP

Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone is a hero—everyone is agreed on that fact. So are his friends, Specialist Alek Skarlatos of the Oregon National Guard, and Anthony Sadler, a college student. All three were awarded the Legion of Honor over the weekend by the president of France for taking down the heavily armed Ayoub El Khazzani before he could massacre passengers on a high speed train bound for Paris.

Stone is an active duty Air Force medic, based in the Azores. He deserves to be decorated by the Air Force for his courage, and to receive a Purple Heart for his wounds—he nearly had this thumb severed by the terrorist’s box-cutter, among other injuries. Skarlatos, if he is still on active duty (he reportedly returned from Afghanistan only last month, so it is possible) also deserves a valor award from his own chain of command.