U.S. Army awards Medal of Heroism to JROTC students killed in high school shooting

Matt Saintsing
February 20, 2018 - 1:02 pm
peter wang

(Photo by Xinhua/Sipa USA


Three JROTC cadets who died after a gunman opened fire at their South Florida high school have been awarded the U.S. Army’s Medal of Heroism.  

Peter Wang, Alaina Petty, and Martin Duque of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla., will posthumously receive the medal, first reported by the Daily Beast.

The Medal of Heroism is the highest Department of Army medal awarded to Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadets who performs “an act of heroism.” The achievement must be so exceptional that the actions sets the individual apart from other students.

Alaina Petty’s family was given the medal at a memorial service held Monday, and Peter Wang’s family will receive the medal Tuesday. Marin Duque’s family will be presented with it on Saturday.

15-year old freshman Peter Wang has emerges as a hero as he “was last seen wearing the gray uniform with black strikes as he held open the door so others could escape,” witnesses told the Miami Herald

Wang’s service will be open casket, and his “family requested their son be buried in his JROTC uniform,” Michael Maddox, a U.S. Army Cadet Command told Connecting Vets. His medal will be pinned on his uniform, but a second medal will be presented to the family, said Maddox.

A petition created Feb. 16 is calling on the the White House to provide Wang full military honors at his funeral. As of Tuesday, it has more than 61,000 signatures, but needs to reach 100,000 by March 18 to receive an official response from the White House.

“His selfless and heroic actions have led to the survival of dozens in the area. Wang died a hero, and deserves to be treated as such, and deserves a full honors military burial,” the petition said.

Jesse Pan, a neighbor, told the South Florida Sun Sentinel that Wang had hoped to attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Whether or not he will receive the military honors, /r/military, a military message board on Reddit, has information for service members and veterans who want to attend Wang’s public service.