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NEWS | April 15, 2022

489th Engineer Battalion Soldier awarded prestigious Bronze de Fleury Medal

By Staff Sgt. Cody Voye 416th Theater Engineer Command

After more than 42 years of significant contributions to Army engineering, a 489th Engineer Battalion Soldier received the Bronze Order of the de Fleury Medal during a ceremony at the U.S. Army Reserve Center on Camp Robinson in North Little Rock, Arkansas, on April 10, 2022.

Master Sgt. Daniel Etherton, a Senatobia, Mississippi-native, officially retired from the Army after serving in every duty position ranging from team leader to company first sergeant, as well as served at the battalion- and brigade-level. He retired as the 489th EN BN operations noncommissioned officer in charge, where he worked for more than four years.

The de Fleury Medal is one of the first and most prestigious medals given by the Corps of Engineers for extraordinary service or support to an element of the Engineer Regiment.

“The battalion would have big boots to fill following Master Sergeant Etherton’s retirement,” said Maj. Darrell Jolly, the 489th Engineer Battalion operations officer, who nominated Etherton for the medal.

The de Fleury was established on Oct. 1, 1779, by the Continental Congress to honor French engineer Francois Louis Tesseidre de Fleury, who volunteered in 1777 to serve with the American Army in its fight for independence from Britain. The medal is comprised of the Steel, Bronze, Silver, and Gold Orders.

The de Fleury is inscribed with the words “a memorial and a reward for courage and boldness,” a sentiment the Soldiers and civilians recognized in Etherton, as they noted he was critical to the success of not only the battalion, but the U. S. Army Reserve and Army engineering as a whole.