The Department of Defense announced today the names of 78 service members who have been invited to attend the Feb. 29 White House dinner hosted by President and Mrs. Obama to express the nation’s gratitude to, and recognize the significant contributions of, the men and women in uniform who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom and/or Operation New Dawn, and the families who supported them.
Service members who will attend come from across America; from diverse backgrounds, ranks; and from all services, including Guard and Reserve. Most remain on active duty. These service members and family members represent more than a million Americans and their families who served and made personal sacrifices in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn.
Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey and the chiefs of the five services and National Guard and Reserve will also attend the dinner.
The list below indicates each service member or veteran’s home state and branch of service.
Alabama: Army Staff Sgt. Shawon Tucker.
Alaska: Army Maj. Shannon Thompson.
American Samoa: Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 John Nikolao.
Arizona: Army Capt. Brian D. Hartman.
Arkansas: Marine Corps Cpl. Aaron Mankin.
Arkansas: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Joseph May.
California: Army Maj. Eldridge R. Singleton.
Colorado: Marine Corps Sgt. John-Mark Gladstone.
Colorado: Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Max R. Rohn.
Connecticut: Army Master Sgt. William Tomlin.
Delaware: Army Sgt. 1st Class Sebastian K. Ellis.
District of Columbia: Army National Guard Capt. Yolanda Lee.
Florida: Navy Master Chief Petty Officer Richard D. Lamoureux.
Georgia: Air Force Staff Sgt. J.H. Smith.
Georgia: Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Rick West.
Guam: Army National Guard Spc. Janice Hernandez Flores.
Hawaii: Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Denise Jelinski-Hall.
Hawaii: Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Nelson A. Visaya.
Idaho: Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Mike Leavitt.
Illinois: Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt Tawanda M. Hanible.
Indiana: Army Master Sgt. Jorge H. Perez.
Iowa: Army Lt. Col. Beth Behn.
Iowa: Army Staff Sgt. Jesse Lee Wandling.
Kansas: Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Joseph Castro.
Kansas: Army 1st Lt. Paul S. Gonzalez.
Kentucky: Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Christopher J. Henderson.
Louisiana: Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia.
Maine: Air Force Master Sgt. Jeremy G. Coombs.
Maine: Air Force Master Sgt. Shane Lacaillade.
Maine: Marine Corps Col. Todd Scott Desgrosseilliers.
Maryland: Marine Corps Maj. Brian E. Wobensmith.
Massachusetts: Air Force Staff Sgt. Andrew Piirainen.
Massachusetts: Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Deverson Lochard.
Massachusetts: Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond Chandler.
Michigan: Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force James Roy.
Michigan: Air Force Master Sgt. Jessica R. Coombs.
Michigan: Army Command Sgt. Maj. Ronald J. Riling.
Minnesota: Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Benjamin N. Straubel.
Minnesota: Army Maj. John Michael Tate.
Mississippi: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Harry Prassenos.
Missouri: Marine Corps Maj. Jennifer S. Parker.
Montana: Army Sgt. 1st Class; Kyle B. Lyon.
Nebraska: Army National Guard Sgt. Heather N. Wunderlich.
Nevada: Air Force Maj. Erik J. Jacobson.
New Hampshire: Army Staff Sgt. Anthony J. Ranfos.
New Hampshire: Marine Corps Capt. Stephen M. McNeil.
New Jersey: Navy Rear Adm. Frank Morneau.
New Mexico: Army Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Petry.
New York: Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Micheal Barrett.
New York: Marine Corps Col. Stephanie C. Smith.
North Carolina: Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Jay Ho Choi.
North Dakota: Marine Corps Sgt. Richard Fiske.
Northern Marianas Islands: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Leslieanne Wilkinson.
Ohio: Army Chief Warrant Officer 5 David Cooper.
Oklahoma: Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Vaughn A. Ary.
Oregon: Army Sgt. Sarah Adams.
Pennsylvania: Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Lawrence Benson.
Puerto Rico: Army Staff Sgt. Miguel Cruz.
Rhode Island: Army Sgt. Joshua R. Labbe.
South Carolina: Marine Corps Sgt. Nytayia D. Jamison.
South Dakota: Marine Corps 1st Sgt. Christina Hunts Horse-May.
Tennessee: Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Anthony H. Bozarth.
Tennessee: Marine Corps Master Sgt. Brian M. Blonder.
Tennessee: Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Donnie Bolton.
Texas: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Eric Alva.
Texas: Army Natinal Guard Chief Warrant Officer 5 Kevin Purtee.
Texas: Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Steven Schulz.
Texas: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class TerryLee Thompson.
Utah: Air National Guard Master Sgt. Kevin T. Bullivant.
Utah: Army Sgt. 1st Class Robbi A. Stanton.
Vermont: Army Col. Peter Newell.
Virgin Islands: Army National Guard Sgt. 1st Class James Gaston Sr.
Virginia: Marine Corps Cpl. Kyle L. Taylor.
Virginia: Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer William Castro.
Washington: Navy Chief Petty Officer Bradley A. VanHorn.
West Virginia: Army Maj. Carter L. Price.
Wisconsin: Air National Guard Tech. Sgt. Christian Bennett.
Wyoming: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Rebekka Spanglerloch.