November 5th, 2007
04:45 PM ET
15 years ago

Richardson presents Purple Heart, touts negotiation skills

Gov. Richardson presented the Purple Heart to the niece of a fallen soldier.

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) – At a campaign stop in Des Moines Monday, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson presented a Purple Heart medal to the niece of Corporal Clem Boody, who was listed as Missing in Action while serving in the U.S. Army in North Korea in 1950.

Richardson said Boody’s niece told him the family was notified back in 1954 that Boody had been posthumously awarded a Purple Heart but that the family had never received it.

“I’m very proud to say that the plea made by the family of Corporal Boody has been answered.”

Richardson thanked a member of his staff who, he said, was vital in securing the award.

Boody, a native of Independence, Iowa, was presumed dead in 1953, but it wasn’t until 2007 that his remains were identified.

The Democratic presidential candidate said he’d been negotiating with the North Koreans “for many years” to collect the remains of nearly 8100 servicemen from the Korean War but that he didn’t want to turn that part of the story into political exploitation.

“I also realized at the time that I was a candidate for president,” Richardson said, “and that it was important that an event like this, the return of remains, should not be politicized.”

-CNN Iowa Producer Chris Welch

Filed under: Bill Richardson • Iowa
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Terri Tacoma, Wa

    54 years later – wow that's pretty incredible, Bill. You're almost as good at negotiating as Jimmy Carter was when he was President!

    November 5, 2007 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  2. TC, Suffolk Virginia

    Governor Richardson has done alot for veterans. Any child of a veteran who is killed in combat can go to college for free in New Mexico. He also supports an idea that Senator Webb also supports of giving a 5% break on the federal income tax to veterans. This would encourage more wealthy people who don't serve now to do so.

    Beyond having some sound policy ideas Governor Richardson is one of the best candidates for a national election. He is a Governor not tied to the Washington establishment. 4 out of the last 5 Presidents were Governors. The last time a Senator was elected President was 47 years ago. Governor Richardson's Hispanic roots also appeal to a growing part of the electorate in key swing states like Florida. He's got my vote!

    November 5, 2007 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  3. Paul, New Orleans, LA

    I can't argue with him on this. He has been in the middle of tough negotiations. If doesn't become President, he would be a great vice or sec of state.

    November 5, 2007 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  4. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    If the media would stop deciding who the "front runners" and "top tier candidates" are, good decent, thoughtful people would have a chance.

    I don't want a president "I can sit down and have a beer with."

    I want someone with intelligence, as much experience as possible, someone who puts the country above party politics.

    The Democrats have a deep field – almost any combination – Richardson has the traits of competent leadership I'm looking for.

    November 5, 2007 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  5. Bob, Seattle, WA

    If not a event to be politicized then why present the medal during a campaing stop? Political double-speak in action.

    November 5, 2007 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  6. Kevin, Ames IA

    Why do more people not pay attention to this man. He is amazing. Richardson for President in 08

    November 5, 2007 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  7. Karen,ny

    I am very sorry to say, but I really don't believe in medals. Especially the Purple Heart. First of all the person has been gone since 1950 and what will the woman do with it really. I'd rather that they gave her a sufficent amount of money which she could use to pay her bill or whatever. Second, the government use to give them to anyone whatever they did even if they shouldn't of gotten one because they were undeserving of one in the first place. So to me it means absolutly nothing.

    November 5, 2007 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |

    And yet this is the best photo op this guy could come up with?

    Maybe he could find Sparky, my dog who I haven't seen since that trip to the desert in 1969?

    Oh wait, I have to get Mr. Kucinich to talk to the Aliens for that.

    November 5, 2007 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  9. Barbara, Houston TX

    Speaking of hearts, Richardson will need a new one if he continues to pack on the pounds like this. Good lord look at him! Turkey day came early this year.

    November 5, 2007 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |

    negotiations and diplomacy have been lacking for seven years. it would be different if you were elected and brought your skills to washington but that's not likely. the bush administration diplomacy starts with labels, then name calling, then sanctioning, then bombing, then invading and finally occupying. what's forgotten is talking. if it's not george w bush' way it's no way. that's the difference between bill richardson and bullhead bush. that's also the reason we're in the mess we're in now. i wish bill richardson was electable.

    November 6, 2007 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  11. summus

    What? How in the world did Richardson end up being the government official to hand out this award. He's not from Iowa. This lady isn't a constituent of his state of New Mexico. What a setup for the cameras. Rather shameless.

    November 6, 2007 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  12. AJ, Chicago IL

    Bill has an impressive resume, but a lot of his responses on major issues affecting America I don't understand. For instance his statements about getting American troops out of Iraq and ending the war in 6 months sounds irresponsible, especially when military generals are saying the opposite. Also I'm not comfortable with Bill being closely related to Hillary and Bill Clinton since he worked for Bill during the Clinton Administration. I honestly think that Bill Richardson is running to be selected as a Vice President candidate especially for Hillary.

    November 6, 2007 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  13. Richard Wilde, Lubbock, Texas

    I am voting for Bill Richardson in 2008.

    November 6, 2007 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  14. Adriaan Hunter

    Guys we need someone with LOTS of experience, especially international exposure to save our country. Obama lacks all of the above. Hillary and McCain are the only two candidates with the kind of experience that can save us from eight years of disaster worldwide. Think before you vote!! Don't be swayed by smoothies!

    January 6, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |