SC war hero to be honored by American Legion post - FOX Carolina 21

SC war hero to be honored by American Legion post

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A photo of Capt. Kimberly Hampton. (Source: U.S. Army) A photo of Capt. Kimberly Hampton. (Source: U.S. Army)

Members of the Spartanburg Post of the American Legion will gather to honor the late U.S. Army Capt. Kimberly Hampton, a native on Easley, SC.

Hampton was an ROTC graduate of Presbyterian College in Clinton and was a distinguished hero in the Iraq War.

Hampton is remembered as the first woman military pilot in U.S. history to be shot down and killed by the enemy.  She was in command of Delta Troop, 1st Squadron, 82nd Airborne division.

Hampton's helicopter went down on Jan. 2, 2004, after it was hit by enemy rocket fire while flying at a low altitude above the outskirts of Fallujah, Iraq, while on a mission to support a raid on an illicit weapons marketplace.

The ceremony to honor Hampton is Saturday, March 1 at 9:45 a.m. It will be held at the historic American Legion home in Duncan Park, Spartanburg.

The post home was dedicated on Nov. 11, 1937, and features a military museum and walk of honor, which will also be open Saturday morning.

The program will include the unveiling of a 4'x6' portrait of Hampton, painted by Robert Wilson Jr.

Wilson is a distinguished South Carolina artist known for subjects related to American military and aviation history.

The artist, along with members of the American Legion post, will present the portrait to the Capt. Kimberly Hampton Memorial Foundation and her mother, Ann Hampton, as well as Kimberly Hampton's father and other relatives.

Ann Hampton is expected to announce a permanent location for the painting and provide and introduction to the work of the Easley-based foundation, which raises funds to benefit military families.

The program on Saturday is free and open to the public.  For more information about the foundation, call Robert Armentano or Marlene Albon at 1-800-682-0181.

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