News Article on Smith Presentation of Medal to Monmouth Co. Family'Medal of Honor Returned to Civil War Hero’s Monmouth County Family'
Nearly 130 years after Thomas Fallon of Freehold earned the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in the Civil War, the distinguished medal has been released to his family.
Rep. Chris Smith (R-4th District) presented Glenn Cashion of Middletown, who researched and determined that he was great nephew of Fallon, with the medal on February 4 during a ceremony held in the borough’s council chambers.
Smith had petitioned the Army for several months, successfully persuading them to release the medal after they first denied Cashion’s request.
“Pvt. Thomas T. Fallon received this Medal of Honor for his courage and heroism in battle, and I am proud to have worked to help return this award to his descendants, as they are the rightful keepers,” said Smith, whose district includes Belmar and Lake Como. “Today we once again honor this man who showed the highest qualities of valor while serving his country in uniform.”
He thanked the Monmouth County Historical Commission, specifically member Muriel Smith, for its research on Fallon’s Civil War record and for tracking down the medal.
Fallon received the Medal of Honor in 1891 for his heroic actions in the Battles of Williamsburg, Fair Oaks and Big Shanty, which spanned from 1862 to 1864. However, after his death in 1916, the medal was returned to the U.S. government and eventually displayed at Dickenson College before being returned to the Defense Department and stored at Fort Knox.
Cashion, also a member of the county’s historical commission, determined through a genealogy survey that he is Fallon’s great nephew, and that since Fallon had no children at the time of his death, he is the surviving next of kin.
Rep. Chris Smith, right, presents Glenn Cashion with the Medal of Honor earned by his great uncle, Civil War hero Thomas Fallon. Also pictured is Muriel Smith of Monmouth County Historical Commission.
When Cashion’s efforts to obtain the medal for the family failed, he reached out to Smith’s office. After several months of correspondence between the Army and Smith — who reasoned that the family simply wished to be determined the rightful owners of the medal that had already been presented to Fallon — the medal was given to the family.
The Medal of Honor was created in 1861, and is the highest award for valor in action that can be bestowed upon a member of the U.S. Armed Forces. Of the total 3,505 Medal of Honor recipients, 1,522 served during the Civil War, according to the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.
TAPinto Belmar/Lake Como is Belmar and Lake Como’s only free daily newspaper. Accredited by the New Jersey Press Association, it is the official electronic newspaper of both municipalities. As a locally owned news organization, TAPinto through its advertisers is able to publish online, objective news 24/7 at no charge. Sign up for its free daily e-News, and follow it on Facebook and Twitter.This article was originally published Feb. 5 2019 by Tap Into at: