Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Major Nurse Annie G. Fox. Annie served in the United States Army Nurse Corps in Word War I from 1918 to 1945.
Annie G. Fox joined the United States Army Nurse Corps near the end of World War I. Throughout her career she was stationed in New York, Fort Sam Houston in Texas, Fort Mason in San Diego, California, Camp John Hay in Benguet and Manila in the Philippines. During that time she rose through the ranks of the Nurse Corps. On Aug. 1, 1941 she became the Chief Nurse. Then, in November of that same year she was promoted to First Lieutenant and transferred to Hickam Field, the newly opened hospital near Pearl Harbor.
On Dec. 7, 1941, one month into her new assignment, the Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. Fox assembled the nurses and volunteers to help care for the wounded. She assisted doctors with surgical procedures while the battle outside continued. When the wounded began to arrive at an overwhelming rate, she administered pain medicine and prepped patients for transfer to other hospitals.
In October of 1942, Fox was the first woman to be awarded the Purple Heart Medal for her service during the attack on Pearl Harbor. For that reason, many people think she was wounded during the attack, but she wasn’t. In 1942, a person didn’t have to be wounded in order to receive the Purple Heart medal; the award could be given for any singularly meritorious act of extraordinary fidelity or essential service.
The same year as her award, the criteria changed to those who are injured in enemy action. In 1944, Fox’s Purple Heart was rescinded and replaced with a Bronze Star Medal with the citation as the Purple Heart originally awarded to her.
She retired from active duty on December 15, 1945.
Annie passed away on January 20, 1987.
We honor her service.
Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay
Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? You’re in luck! VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/his service.
It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. All it takes is an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with as much information as you can put together, along with some good photos. Visit our blog post about nominating to learn how to create the best submission.
Graphic by Cynthia Tong: Cynthia is a senior at New York University studying Public Policy.