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Fort Drum soldier named USO Soldier of the Year

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FORT DRUM — A soldier on post will be recognized in Washington D.C. as the USO Soldier of the Year, after he helped remove passengers from a fiery bush crash in Waterloo in July 2011.

Staff Sgt. Jacob J. Perkins, of the C Troop of the 1st Squadron, 89th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, was selected for the award by senior enlisted officials in the Army.

He was credited with being one of the only people to enter the burning bus, which had crashed around 1:30 a.m. on July 22, 2011 after being rear-ended by a tractor-trailer on Interstate 90. He also reportedly drove a crash victim to Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, to be reunited with a more seriously injured relative.

In December he was awarded the Soldier’s Medal for his heroism that day.

Staff Sgt. Perkins will be honored on Nov. 2 at the USO’s annual gala.

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