Heroes honored at Navy Night at Progressive Field

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CLEVELAND -- Baseball fans turned out to see the first place Cleveland Indians and to salute first class members of the U.S. Navy Saturday night during Navy Week.

A military fly-over of Progressive Field by the U.S. Navy Blue Angels and the National Anthem by the Brecksville-Broadview Heights Marching Band set the stage for a memorable night at Progressive Field.

Among those honored was 94-year-old Emory Crowder, who served in the South Pacific during World War Two.

The Silver Star recipient was injured with shrapnel in his eye and chest, but refused to leave the battlefield so he could keep helping others who were injured.

"I asked to go back to my company because I was very close to them, so I returned and went to serve with them the rest of the time," Crowder said.

Also saluted was 94-year-old Medal of Honor recipient Hershel Williams who took out seven bunkers in the Battle of Iwo Jima.

Williams said he was able to do his job because Marines died protecting him.

"If it hadn't been for other Marines I wouldn't have survived. Two of them sacrificed their lives protecting me," Williams said.

Northeast Ohio native Haraz Ghanbari has served his country for 17 years.

He served in Bosnia and Afghanistan.

The former Cleveland Indians ball boy was promoted to Lieutenant Commander in the Navy during the pregame ceremony.

"It's a true honor and privilege just to come to my hometown as a former ball boy in 1997 to have the Under Secretary of the Navy, the Medal of Honor recipient from World War Two and a Silver Star Medal of Honor recipient from World War Two officiate my promotion with my wife and kids just means the world to me," said LT. Commander Haraz Ghanbari.

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