Retired command Sgt. Maj. William H. Acebes was recently honored at Fort Benning as the 2011 enlisted recipient of the Doughboy Award.
Acebes received the Doughboy Award during the Maneuver Conference hosted by Fort Benning.
Acebes’ wife, the former Brenda Butler of Richmond Hill, was also honored with the Shield of Sparta Award, presented for “faithful and significant service to the infantry soldiers and families.”
The Doughboy Award is the highest honor presented annually by the chief of infantry on behalf of the infantry community and recognizes an individual for outstanding contributions to the U.S. Army Infantry. The award is a chrome replica of a helmet worn by American Expeditionary Soldiers during World War I, and the early days of World War II.
Acebes’ co-recipients of the award given Sept. 13 were retired Gen. Edward S. “Shy” Meyer, who retired as chief of staff of the Army in 1983, and Joe Galloway, a civilian war correspondent imbedded with the 7th Cavalry Division in Vietnam and co-author of “We Were Soldiers Once…and Young: Ia Drang—The Battle That Changed the War in Vietnam.”
Past recipients of the Doughboy Award include Bob Hope, Bill Mauldin, Ross Perot, late U.S. Sen. John Tower, former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole and retired Gen. Colin Powell.
Acebes is a veteran of multiple combat assignments, including three tours in Vietnam and the mission to rescue American medical students in Grenada in 1983. He was also a member of “Operation Urgent Fury” and was inducted in to the Ranger Hall of Fame in 2003.
Acebes served as command sergeant major for units, including the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, and retired in 1995 as the command sergeant major for the U.S. Army Infantry Center.
The Acebes reside in Midway/Lake George area.