VA Clinic to be Named after ‘Doolittle Raider’ David Thatcher
President Donald Trump this week signed the Montana Congressional Delegation’s legislation to rename three Department of Veterans Affairs Clinics.
The Community Based Outpatient Clinic on Palmer Street will be renamed in honor of David J. Thatcher, Missoula’s own ‘Doolittle Raider’, who took part in the daring carrier-based bombing raid on Japan in World War II.
Montana Senator Steve Daines paid tribute to Thatcher and other veterans from ‘the greatest generation’.
“The sacrifices of David Thatcher, Dr. Joe Medicine Crow and Ben Steele will now be remembered by Montanans for generations to come,” said Daines. “It is important to tell the stories of these great WWII veterans and the price that must be paid for freedom.”
Congressman Greg Gianforte echoed those sentiments from hois office in Washington, D.C.
“David Thatcher, Ben Steele, and Dr. Joseph Medicine Crow represent the heroism and selflessness of the greatest generation and the very spirit of Montana,” Gianforte said. “With President Trump signing our bill into law, future generations of Montanans will recognize their names and the contributions they made in defense of our freedoms and liberties.”
At David Thatcher’s funeral in Missoula in 2016, Lt. General Matthew Quinn, U.S. Army National Guard, said that Staff Sgt. Thatcher was actually his neighborhood postal carrier in Missoula.
“David Thatcher came home, put on a mailman’s uniform and delivered mail for 30 years, and that’s all he wanted in life was to be with his family and to do his job,” said General Quinn. “Like so many of the greatest generation of World War II, that is what we saw.”
The Community Based Outpatient Clinic in Billings will be renamed in honor of Dr. Joseph Medicine Crow (Dakaak Baako) and the Community Based Specialty Clinic located in Billings will be renamed in honor of Benjamin Charles Steele.