RENO, Nev. (AP) — An Army veteran who died without knowing he won the nation’s highest medal of bravery is getting the honor he’s been owed for nearly 140 years.
Nevada Rep. Mark Amodei held a ceremony Monday morning in Reno to present the Medal of Honor to the grandson of Private Robert Smith.
Then-President Rutherford B. Hayes had approved the award for Smith in 1877 for his bravery during a battle the year earlier against American Indian tribes in the Dakota Territory.
Smith’s true name was Harry Reynolds, and he returned to using that name after his discharge.
The veteran moved to Elko, where he died in 1930 without knowing he won the medal.
A military group informed Smith’s grandson about the never-presented award in 2011. Amodei’s office helped secure a new medal.