In Uniform

Lynnwood soldier awarded Purple Heart

Army Spc. Jordan Houghton was among six soldiers from the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, honored Aug. 13 at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The brigade’s commander Col. Chuck Webster pinned Purple Heart medals on the soldiers’ uniforms. Webster said soldiers such as Houghton are the best the Army has to offer. The medal is given to soldiers who prevail in traumatic situations, Army officials said.

Houghton called the earning of a Purple Heart bittersweet.

“It’s an honor to get the award, but I can’t say it’s an award I would have ever really wanted,” said Houghton, who in March was blown 15 feet by a concussive wave from the detonation of 400 pounds of C-4 explosive while on a mission in the Zhari District in Kandahar province in Afghanistan.

“I’m happy to be alive,” he said in a press release from the Army. “I got lucky.”

Houghton, a combat medic with 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, and his platoon had been laying C-4 along a wall outside a village to gain access to the hiding spot of a large weapons collection. He and his team had been receiving mortar fire when a detonation cord connected to the section of C-4 was hit.

Houghton, a native of Lynnwood, was unconscious for a few minutes following the explosion. Then he ran to the aid of his team members. The blast had knocked the gear off Houghton’s platoon leader, who was severely burned.

“They’re all my brothers,” said Houghton, whose brigade sent him home early as a result of his injuries, which included perforated eardrums, hearing loss and short-term memory loss. “That’s the simplest way to put it. I’d gladly give my life for any one of them. It sucks not being there with them (in Afghanistan.)”

Learn about veterans burial benefits

Veterans and their families are invited to a burial-benefits information session offered at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tuesday at Cabela’s sporting goods store, 9810 Quil Ceda Blvd., near Marysville. The event is free.

Sponsorship is by an Everett funeral home. Call 425-773-2952 for more information.

Active Duty

Marine Corps Pfc. Laura Freitas, daughter of Mary and Les Freitas of Edmonds, earned the title of U.S. Marine after graduating from recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, S. C. Prior to graduation, Freitas endured “The Crucible,” a 54-hour final test of recruits’ minds and bodies.

Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Jason Snyder, son of Liz and Bob Snyder of Lake Stevens, and fellow sailors aboard the guided missile destroyer USS Farragut and guided-missile cruiser USS Hue City, recently conducted a series of maneuvers and drills with an Italian frigate and submarine. Snyder is a 1998 graduate of Lake Stevens High School. He joined the Navy in August 1998.

Veterans calendar

Veterans of Foreign Wars

Edmonds VFW Post 8870 and Ladies Auxiliary: 12:30 p.m. second Fridays, Edmonds Senior Center, 220 Railroad Ave., Edmonds. Call Fred at 206-940-7502.

Arlington Boyer-Daniel VFW Post 1561: 7 p.m. first Tuesdays, Servpro office, 13421 39th Ave. NE. All veterans who have served honorably and received a combat or campaign medal are eligible to join. Call 425-232-8453, 360-435-6677 or go to

Gay Jones VFW Post 921 and Auxiliary: 1 p.m. third Saturdays, Boys &Girls Club, 402 Second St., Snohomish. Most overseas veterans are eligible. Help for all veterans who need a hand up. Call 425-397-7111.

Everett VFW Post 2100: 6:30 p.m. fourth Thursday, 2711 Oaks Ave., Everett. Ladies Auxiliary 2100: 6:30 p.m. second Monday. Call 425-337-1559.

Lynnwood VFW Post 1040: first Thursdays, Alderwood Youth Club, 19619 24th Ave. W., Lynnwood. Call 425-774-7416, 425-697-4102 or 425-486-2637.

Old Guard VFW Post 2100: 6:30 p.m. last Thursday, 2711 Oakes Ave., Everett. Call 425-252-2100.

Gold Bar VFW Post 9417: 6 p.m. first Thursdays. Call “Sarge” Watkins at 425-931-1638. Ladies Auxiliary: 4 p.m. first Wednesdays. Call Arden King at 360-793-2786.

Whitehead-Muzzall VFW Post 7392: 360-675-4048 or go to

American Legion

Legion Post 96: 7 p.m. second Tuesdays, Legion Hall, 1201 First St., Snohomish. Call 360-568-5340. Post 96 is raising funds for a large mural created by David Hose.

Legion Post 58: 7 p.m. third Tuesdays, Odd Fellows Building, 610 Lewis St., Monroe. Call Bob at 360-863-3544 or go to www.american

Legion Post 6: 7 p.m. second Thursdays, VFW Hall, 2711 Oakes Ave., Everett. Call Marvin at 425-224-4137.

Legion Post 181: 7 p.m. second and fourth Thursdays, Lake Stevens Community Center, 1812 124th Ave NE. Call Tom at 425-314-5865, Tony at 360-631-3242, or Vern at 425-343-9637; email; or go to [URL];

Legion Post 178: 7 p.m. third Thursdays, Legion Hall, 2nd Street and Cedar Avenue NE, Marysville. Social hour at 6 p.m. Call Jeremiah at 253-405-8175 or Lett at 425-220-4940.

To submit news for this column, contact reporter Gale Fiege: 425-339-3427

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