If you don’t mind indulging me. His daughters had printed out my post and displayed it at the funeral service. Also on display was this shadowbox Don had put together years ago (as well as one with his NASA pins for various missions).
I had not recognized the award between Don’s Silver Star and Bronze Star. When I told XBrad it looked like a Legion of Merit, he said that was usually for generals and colonels as a farewell gesture, that it was unusual for an enlisted man to get one. See for yourself, and believe me, no Stolen Valor here. The part I messed up was thinking he was E-8 and not E-7, and that was entirely my presumption that anyone who made sergeant at 19 would have been promoted more than twice in 18 years.