Durbin Will Host Illinois Soldier for Today's State of the Union

[WASHINGTON, DC] – In what has become an annual tradition, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), will host a wounded soldier as his guest for President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address. Sergeant First Class (SFC) John Wright from Tuscola, Illinois will also attend the Secretary of the Senate’s dinner immediately preceding the President’s address. Durbin has invited soldiers who have served in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars as his guests to the State of the Union since 2005 when he hosted Army Major Tammy Duckworth.


“SFC Wright has given so much in service to our nation. I think it is only fitting that he is here tonight and part of a special moment in our nation’s history – the State of the Union address,” said Durbin. “I am proud and honored to have him as my guest tonight and introduce him to my Senate colleagues.”


SFC Wright was born in St. Charles, Missouri in 1971, later moving to Tuscola, Illinois and graduating from Tuscola High School in 1989. He attended basic and advanced individual training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri in November of 1990. He was deployed with the 555th Engineer Brigade to Iraq in 2009. After 2 months, his battalion was deployed to Afghanistan. He was struck by an improvised explosive device and wounded on July 24, 2009 in Afghanistan.


Among awards for his service, SFC Wright has received the Combat Action Badge, the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal (2nd award) and the Army Achievement Medal (12th Award). He is married to Hyunmi Lim and has two children: Bradley, 16 and Adam, 14. He is currently recovering from his injuries at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and will soon relocate to Brook Army Medical Center in Texas to continue his recovery.