102-year-old Montgomery woman receives Congressional Gold Medal for WWII service

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – A long-awaited honor – for one of the oldest residents of Montgomery, Alabama. Romay Davis, 102, received the Congressional Gold Medal for his service in World War II.

It is one of the highest civilian honors Congress can bestow. Private Davis – certainly deserved it.

“She is the oldest and one of six living to receive this honor,” said Colonel Eries Mentzer, 42nd Air Force Base Wing Commander, Maxwell AFB.

Deployed overseas to Europe in 1945 – Davis and 854 other women from the 6888th – sorted and redirected a backlog of more than 18 million pieces of mail – thus boosting the morale of troops on the front lines.

“Governor Ivey is very fond of saying – sometimes the best man for the job is a woman… And obviously the Army recognized the fact since all these men couldn’t get the mail out – they sent a battalion of women there and they fixed it in half the time they thought they could,” said Major General Sheryl Gordon of the Alabama National Guard.

An example and an inspiration – Davis helped pave the way for so many women.

“Words cannot express what it means to be by your side at this incredible time. I and so many others would not be here if you had not opened the freedom to serve. Thank you for your exemplary service,” said the Colonel Mentzer.

Among the rewards, a historical military trunk with a shadow box and an authentic WWII uniform included. It’s a special memory because Davis’ uniform was stolen from his car when he got home. She is grateful beyond measure.

“I never thought something like this could have happened to me. I had never seen a uniform before – I lost mine on my way home. And the first time a Congress medal for us all. For all of us, those who have gone and those who remain. Thank you… Thank you very much to all of you, ”said Davis.

The honor was very special, as Tuesday marked the 74th anniversary of the integration of the armed forces.

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