Kingston, N.Y. – U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and U.S. Congressman Chris Gibson today announced that the bill to rename the Kingston Post Office in honor of Kingston native and World War II hero, Staff Sergeant Robert Dietz, has passed the Senate and now heads to the President’s desk for final signature. Congressman Chris Gibson introduced the House version that recently passed with bipartisan support. Located at 90 Cornell Street in Kingston, Schumer and Gillibrand said renaming the post office in his honor would serve as a lasting tribute to Staff Sgt. Dietz, who was killed in action during a mission in WWII.
Staff Sgt. Robert Dietz was born in January 1921 in Kingston, NY. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942 and served as a Staff Sgt. in Company A, 38th Armored Infantry Battalion, 7th Armored Division. He was killed in action during a mission in WWII after advancing through enemy fire in Germany to disconnect bridge demolition charges and neutralize artillery teams defending the road into town. Staff Sgt. Dietz was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor in December 1945 for his service.
“For the way he dedicated his life to serving his country, Staff Sgt. Robert Dietz was a hero and will long be celebrated for his bravery and courage,” said Senator Schumer. “Naming the Kingston Post Office after him will be a lasting tribute to his service, and allow his legacy to live on in an enduring way. I am honored to be able to announce that the bill to do just that has now been passed on the floor of the Senate, and I will continue fighting tooth and nail until it receives final signature from the President.”
“Staff Sergeant Robert Dietz bravely served our nation during World War II and made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedoms,” said Senator Gillibrand. “He is truly an inspiring example of gallantry. This designation would be a fitting tribute for the hometown hero from Kingston in honor of his service.”
“I want to thank Senators Gillibrand and Schumer for joining me in support of this bipartisan, constituent-driven legislation, which honors a member of the Greatest Generation who displayed unparalleled bravery and heroism and gave his life in defense of our freedoms,” said Congressman Gibson. “We are hopeful the President will sign our bill into law so that we may gather together with the people of Kingston to celebrate Staff Sergeant Dietz at the Post Office that will bear his name for generations to come.”
“Staff Sergeant Dietz’ heroism is legendary in our community and his sacrifice for our nation in WWII exemplifies the highest level of bravery,” said Ulster County Executive Mike Hein. “This honor stands as a tribute to a true American Hero.”
The text of Staff Sergeant Dietz’s Medal of Honor citation from the U.S. Army reads, “By his intrepidity and valiant effort on his self-imposed mission, single-handedly opened the road for the capture of Kirchain and left with his comrades an inspiring example of gallantry in the face of formidable odds.”
A copy of Senator Schumer’s and Senator Gillibrand’s letter to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs included below:
Dear Chairman Johnson and Ranking Member Carper:
We write in support of H.R. 1442, a bill to designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 90 Cornell Street in Kingston, New York, as the “Staff Sergeant Robert H. Dietz Post Office Building.” This bill passed the House of Representatives by voice vote on September 24, 2015. H.R. 1442 is now before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.
Staff Sergeant Robert H. Dietz was born in Kingston, New York in January 1921. He enlisted in the United States Army in 1942 and served as a Staff Sergeant in Company A, 38th Armored Infantry Battalion, 7th Armored Division. In March 1945, Staff Sergeant Dietz was killed in action during a World War II mission in Kirchain, Germany after advancing through enemy fire to disconnect bridge demolition charges and neutralize artillery teams defending the road into town. Staff Sergeant Dietz was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor in December 1945 for his service. The text of his Medal of Honor citation reads, “Staff Sergeant Dietz by his intrepidity and valiant effort on his self-imposed mission, single-handedly opened the road for the capture of Kirchain and left with his comrades an inspiring example of gallantry in the face of formidable odds.”
Naming this post office after Staff Sergeant Robert H. Dietz would be a fitting tribute to honor his memory and contributions to his country. We are proud to offer our support for this bill, and appreciate your consideration of this legislation.
Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator
United States Senator