Five-Time Grammy Winner Wynonna Judd served as the spotlight entertainer Friday night at the Washington Hilton, joining actor Dennis Haysbert and New York Times best selling authors Harlan Coben, Phillip Margolin, Heather Graham and F. Paul Wilson to headline the USO Gala, an annual awards presentation which honors military heros, volunteers and corporate leaders.
Continuing a time-honored tradition of recognizing an enlisted service hero from each branch of the military, the 2013 awards were presented as follows:
- Soldier of the Year: Sergeant Craig D. Warfle, 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment (Fort Lewis, WA)
- Marine of the Year: Sergeant Andrew C. Seif, 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (Camp Lejeune, NC)
- Sailor of the Year: Petty Officer 1st Class Andrew C. Munden, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit THREE, Naval Amphibious Base Coronado (San Diego, CA)
- Airman of the Year: Staff Sergeant Christopher D. Broyles, 140th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Flight (Buckley Air Force Base, CO)
- Coast Guardsman of the Year: Petty Officer 3rd Class Samuel A. Peikert, Tactical Law Enforcement Team South (Opa Locka, FL)
- National Guardsman of the Year: Staff Sergeant Christopher D. Petersen, 103rd Rescue Squadron, New York Air National Guard, Francis S. Gabreski Airport (Westhampton Beach, NY)
- USO Volunteer of the Year Award: Gunnery Sergeant Jeremiah Johnson, USO Camp Hansen and USO Camp Schwab (Okinawa, Japan)
After the awards ceremony, guests let loose at the “After Party”on the terrace, complete with several cocktail bars, lights snacks, and plenty of dancing.