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Congresswoman Elise Stefanik

Representing the 21st District of New York

Stefanik Presents Silver Star to Family of Lieutenant Elmer Jebo of Tupper Lake

April 21, 2016
Press Release

Washington, D.C.– Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21) hosted a ceremony in Washington, D.C. at the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing room to present the family of First Lieutenant Elmer Jebo -- a constituent from Tupper Lake – with a Silver Star that he was awarded by the U.S. Army but never received. Earlier this week, Congresswoman Stefanik honored Lieutenant Jebo’s service on the House floor.

“One of the most important jobs of a Member of Congress is representing the veterans in their district – and I’m proud to represent the district with the most veterans of any in New York State,” said Congresswoman Stefanik. “Lieutenant Jebo bravely served his country in campaigns across Italy and I am humbled to present the Silver Star to the family of this American hero -- it is a rare and unique honor.”

Click here for video of the today’s ceremony. For higher resolution photos, contact Tom Flanagin at tom.flanagin@mail.house.gov.

Background:

Elmer Hiram Jebo was born on January 14, 1914, in St. Regis Falls, New York to Fred Jebo and Carrie Rivers Jebo of Conifer, New York. He attended Tupper Lake High School and graduated in 1932. He starred in football and basketball at Tupper Lake High School and attended Syracuse University on a football scholarship. After graduating in 1938, he taught at Adams Center High School where in addition to his teaching duties he was athletic director, football coach and baseball coach until 1940. 

In 1940, Elmer was drafted into the U.S. Army and following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, was accepted into Officer Candidate School. On June 4, 1942, he married Phyllis Edna Wright of Saratoga Springs, New York, before he was deployed overseas to Europe. Elmer participated in the military campaigns in Sicily, Naples-Foggia and Rome-Arno as a First Lieutenant and Unit Combat Commander. He was awarded the “Bronze Star” while with the 180th Infantry Regiment on October 27, 1943, for “exemplary conduct in action against the enemy.”  His unit participated in the Anzio invasion in 1944 and he was awarded the “Silver Star” on February 24, 1944, while serving as Commander of L Company. He was severely wounded on May 26, 1944, and as a result of his wounds, lost his right leg. He was brought back to the United States and spent many months at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington in recovery and rehabilitation.  He was awarded a Purple Heart medal as a result of those injuries. On July 21, 1945, Elmer retired from the U.S. Army due to his disability. He was a First Lieutenant at the time of his retirement.

Elmer went to work in Washington with the Department of Labor in 1945. He was a senior manager with the Manpower Administration in the Department of Labor and was involved in several major labor strikes during the 1960s including the famous dispute between United Farm Workers and the Teamster Union. He and Phyllis moved to Alexandria, Virginia, and raised three sons, Donald R. Jebo, Jerry K. Jebo and Steven W. Jebo. He was active with the Disabled American Veterans and served on several Presidential committees on veterans’ rights during the 1950s and 1960s. Both Phyllis and he were involved with the Trinity Methodist Church of Alexandria, Virginia. Following his retirement, Elmer and Phyllis moved to Radford, Virginia.  Phyllis died on October 4, 2000, and Elmer died on August 22, 2001.

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