Samuel E. Via joined the Air Force in 1954. He served during the Korean War and Vietnam War as an aeromedical evacuation technician.
Throughout his tour in Korea and three tours in Vietnam, Via’s service involved evacuating and transporting wartime casualties to areas where they could receive further medical care. As an aeromedical technician, Via flew C-141 and C-130 missions. His role was essential to reducing battlefield deaths, as aeromedical evacuation squadrons were trained to keep patients stable in-flight.
Via received the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal for providing direct combat support to the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces in South Vietnam for at least six months.
Afterward, Via went on to perform multiple temporary duty assignments in Southeast Asia and the United States. He retired from the Air Force in 1974 at the rank of technical sergeant. Via’s additional awards and decorations include two Air Force Commendation Medals, a Korean Defense Medal, a Vietnam Service Medal and an Air Force Outstanding Unit Award.
Upon returning to civilian life, Via worked as a lieutenant in the Knox County Sheriff’s Corrections Division. He is retired and currently resides in Kodak, Tennessee.
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Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay
Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/her service.
It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. All it takes is an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with as much information as you can put together, along with some good photos. Visit our blog post about nominating to learn how to create the best submission.
Writer: Rachel Heimann
Editor: Essence McPherson
Graphic artist: Michelle Zischke