WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) today released the following statement after introducing two bills to rename U.S. Post Offices in Fate, Texas and Greenville, Texas after former U.S. Congressman Ralph Hall and veteran and actor Audie Murphy. Companion bills have been introduced in the House of Representatives by the entire Texas delegation, led by U.S. Congressman John Ratcliffe (TX-04).
“Both Rep. Hall and Mr. Murphy represented the best of Texas, with their strong commitment to serving their neighbors and by always putting others before themselves,” said Sen. Cornyn. “I am proud to join my fellow Texans in honoring them this way and I ask my colleagues in the Senate to join me in supporting these bills.”
Ralph Moody Hall was born on May 3, 1923 in Fate, Texas. A lifelong resident of the 4th District of Texas, he graduated from Rockwall High School in 1941 before joining the U.S. Navy in December 1942, where he flew Hellcat fighters during World War II in defense of our nation. After the war, Hall served as the Rockwall County judge from 1950-1962. He then went on to be elected to the Texas State Senate, where he served until 1972.
In 1980, Ralph Hall was elected to the United States House of Representatives to represent the 4th District of Texas. Serving 34 years in the House, Congressman Hall held high-ranking positions on the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, where he served as chairman. As the oldest Member of the House of Representatives, he was selflessly dedicated to his constituents and left behind a timeless legacy. Ralph Hall passed away on March 7, 2019 in Rockwall.
Audie Murphy was born on June 20, 1925, in Kingston, Texas and grew up on a sharecropper’s farm. In 1942, Audie enlisted in the Army at the Greenville, Texas post office and deployed to North Africa shortly thereafter, preparing to invade Sicily, Italy. He went on to fight in battles on the Italian mainland, at Salerno and Anzio, and then became part of the Allied forces moving toward Rome. Throughout these engagements, Murphy rose in rank, and after capturing Rome, he received a decoration for gallantry. Not long after receiving this achievement, Audie was sent to be a part of the campaign to invade southern France. Despite thousands of casualties in his division, the campaign was successful – but Audie’s biggest challenge was yet to come.
In January 1945, near the village of Holtzwihr in eastern France, Lieutenant Murphy’s troops came under strong attack by German forces. Ordering his troops to fall back, Murphy – on top of a burning tank with a single machine gun – stayed behind to singlehandedly halt the enemies’ advance. By stalling their advance, his troops were able to then counterattack and drive the enemy from Holtzwihr. For his gallantry in action, he was granted the Medal of Honor. Audie would go on to receive every military combat award for valor possible in the U.S., as well as a number of awards from France and Belgium.
Upon returning to the U.S., Audie started his career as an actor and starred in over 40 films, including his memoir, To Hell and Back, and the Red Badge of Courage. After nearly 20 years in the acting business, Audie retired and began a career in private business, which proved to be unsuccessful. In 1971, Audie died in a private plane crash near Roanoke, Virginia. Audie Murphy is remembered for his valiant perseverance and service to our nation.