August 7th is Purple Heart Day - a Day to Honor America's Combat Wounded and Fallen Heroes
Each year on August 7th, Americans should pause to remember and honor the brave men and women who were either wounded on the battlefield or paid the ultimate sacrifice with their lives. The Purple Heart is awarded to any member of the U.S. Armed Forces that has been wounded or died as a result of a wound in battle. This now includes those persons who died in captivity while a prisoner of war (POW).
We now celebrate Purple Heart Day on the anniversary of its inception, August 7th. On this day it is our patriotic duty to remember and recognize those people willing to serve our country, no matter the price.
During the early period of American involvement in World War II, the Purple Heart was awarded both for wounds received in action against the enemy and for meritorious performance of duty. With the establishment of the Legion of Merit, by an Act of Congress, the practice of awarding the Purple Heart for meritorious service was discontinued. By Executive Order 9277, dated December 3, 1942, the decoration was extended to be applicable to all services and required that regulations of the Services be uniform in application as far as practicable. This executive order also authorized the award only for wounds received.
PURPLE HEART RECIPIENTS
War I: 250,000¹
War II: 964,409
Persian Gulf: 590
Afghanistan: 3,495 *
Iraq: 34,808 *
Total Estimated: 1.7 M¹
NOTE¹: Estimates only. Battlefield awards and incomplete records; 1974 fire in St. Louis repository.
*Data as of 6/20/2009
The organization now known as the "Military Order of the Purple Heart of the U.S.A. Inc.," (MOPH) was formed in 1932 for the protection and mutual interest of all who have received the decoration.
Chartered by the Congress, The MOPH is unique among Veteran Service Organizations in that all its members were wounded in combat. For this sacrifice, they were awarded the Purple Heart Medal.
With grants from the MOPH Service Foundation, the MOPH and its Ladies Auxiliary promote Patriotism, Fraternalism, and the Preservation of America's military history. Most importantly, they provide comfort and assistance to all Veterans and their families, especially those requiring claims assistance with the VA, those who are homeless, and those requiring employment assistance. MOPH volunteers through the VAVS program, provide assistance to hospitalized veterans at VA sites and State Veterans Homes.
For information contact:
National Public Relations Director, John Bircher, 352-753-5535