Military Order of the Purple Heart elects first Alaskan national commander

Posted on August 23, 2013 

Ron Siebels

COURTESY U.S. MILITARY ORDER OF THE PURPLE HEART

Military Order of the Purple Heart Elects Ron Siebels as National Commander

In 1967, Ron Siebels entered the U.S. Army and was first assigned to Germany where he quickly attained the rank of Sergeant.  He then received orders for Vietnam and during his first tour of duty he was wounded.  He was then reassigned and promoted again and served with four different units during two tours of duty in Vietnam.  Patriot Siebels says he is humbled by the strong will of those who were wounded with more serious wounds than he received.  Following his service in Vietnam he applied for and was granted a Warrant Officer Commission in 1975.  During his military career he continued his education and completed classes with the University of North Carolina, the University of Maryland, and the University of Alaska.  After 20 years of military service he retired from the Army in 1987 as a CW4. 

An avid sportsman, Ron and his wife decided to retire and live in Alaska where he previously served two tours and fell in love with all that Alaska has to offer.  In his second career, he worked as the Fleet Equipment supervisor for a major Alaska utility company and has since retired a second time. Ron has been an active MOPH member since 1985. He and his wife Elaine met in high school, and were married in 1967. They now reside in Anchorage, Alaska and have two sons, Lance and Eric. Their son Eric also resides in Anchorage. Unfortunately, Lance died at the age of 19, following a tragic California traffic accident in 1987, and is buried at the Ft Richardson National cemetery. Ron states that the painful loss of their son instigated his desire to retire from the Army. That loss has helped him relate to what other families endure when loved ones are lost before they have had a chance to enjoy the full spectrum of life. Ron now devotes his time and energy to the myriad services provided to veterans by the MOPH. In addition to holding the positions as Commander of the Department of Alaska and Commander of Region III, Ron served as the MOPH National Americanism Officer and the MOPH National Purple Heart Trail coordinator before his election in 2011 to the leadership of the National Organization.

The organization now known as the "Military Order of the Purple Heart of the U.S.A. Inc.," (MOPH) was formed in 1932 for the protection and mutual interest of all combat wounded veterans and active duty men and women who have received the decoration. Chartered by the Congress, The MOPH is unique among Veteran Service Organizations in that all its members were wounded in combat. For this sacrifice, they were awarded the Purple Heart Medal. With grants from the MOPH Service Foundation, the MOPH and its Ladies Auxiliary promote Patriotism, Fraternalism, and the Preservation of America's military history. Most importantly, through veteran service, they provide comfort and assistance to all Veterans and their families, especially those requiring claims assistance with the VA, those who are homeless, and those requiring employment assistance.  Programs of the MOPH include VA Volunteer Service, First Responder Recognition, JROTC Leadership Award, Scholarships, Americanism, Purple Heart Trail and Cities, Welfare, and numerous community service programs, all with the objective of service to Veterans and their families.

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