PRESS RELEASE - International Nobel Peace Prize Medal 1988 Awarded to John W Sonley.

January 14, 2006 (KWVA Release, Pineville, Louisiana)

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National Sergeant at Arms and Presidential Advisor John W Sonley of the Korean War Veterans Association (KWVA), received the award of the International Nobel Peace Prize Medal of 1988 on December 10, 2005. Sonley, a retired peace officer who resides in Phoenix, was nominated for the award by National KWVA President Louis Dechert. John is one of fourteen veterans who had served in Korea nominated by Dechert in 2005. This group was the first veterans to receive the award in the United States.

Mr. Sonley, a Sergeant in the 5th Regimental Combat Team, US and UN Forces, 8th Army, was critically wounded in action in Korea, in October 1951. The regimental coat of arms for the 5th RCT is "I'LL TRY, SIR," which Dechert asserts is "perfectly descriptive of Big John Sonley."

Dechert and Sonley each belong to the Military Order of the Purple Heart of the USA (MOPH). Since he could not be present to bestow the award, President Dechert requested that it be awarded to Mr. Sonley at the Annual Christmas Party of the Department of Arizona, MOPH, by the Department Commander Albert Rodriguez. Dominic Digiovanni, a Veterans Service Officer of the MOPH and a mutual friend of Dechert and Sonley assisted Patriot Rodriquez in the presentation.

The International Nobel Peace Prize Medal 1988 is authorized by the Nobel Foundation, through the Norwegian Defense Department, to all veterans who served in UN Forces in Korea at any time prior to December 10, 1988. The medal is manufactured and distributed by the Danish firm Skandinavisk Handels Kompagni (SHK). Further details concerning the medal, SHK, and the KWVA are available at and

The KWVA is the US affiliate of the International Federation of Korean War Veterans Associations, headquartered in Seoul, Korea, and comprised of the Republic of Korea and the other nations which fought for and defended peace on the Korean Peninsula, 1950-2006. Any veteran who served honorably in the US Armed Forces on the Korean Peninsula, 1950-to date, may join the KWVA. Further information is available by contacting the Recruiting Task Force Chairman, Director Jeff Brodeur,, 857.719.3121, or Secretary Bill Hutton,, 703.842.74295.


RELEASED: KWVA National President Louis T. Dechert, 318.641.8033

(Posted 1/14/06)