Purple Heart medals

Commemorating Soldiers on Purple Heart Day

August 7, 2017

The way it started

The decoration, originally named the Badge of Military Merit, was created in the years of the Revolutionary War in the United States and was awarded at the time to 6 military men. The establishment of this decoration, awarded for the military exploits, is celebrated on the 7th of August. The holiday is called Purple Heart Day and is aimed at honoring the military people who once received the Purple Heart Medal.

George Washington is considered to be the creator of the decoration which, according to his order, was supposed to be given to the soldiers who demonstrated courage in the acts of war. The original decoration was shaped as a heart and was made of purple silk. A silver thread was attached to the silk heart with the embroidered inscription “Merit”.  

The designer of the Badge of Merit is not known. There is no exact number of those who were decorated with this honorable award. Professor Ray Raymond, whose book “The Badge of Military Merit” is dedicated to the history of the decoration, thinks that all the information about the first recipients of the Badge and their heroic deeds disappeared long ago. The author of the book states that it was not until the 200th anniversary of George Washington when the Purple Heart was recognized and reinstated again. The Purple Heart Order was reinstated thanks to the efforts of General Douglas MacArthur. The modern version of the decoration has George Washington's bust and his coat of arms portrayed on it.

The way it is observed

There is no official code or procedure to celebrate the day. The main idea of the holiday is to pay tribute to those who sacrificed their lives for the good of the nation and were awarded the Purple Heart Medal. 

When it is observed

Beginning from the year 1932, there have been chosen different days to celebrate Purple Heart Day. It could be celebrated on the Day of George Washington’s birth or even on St. Valentine’s Day. It could be any other day, chosen for celebration in different states and even cities. Generally, the Americans were asked to support the veterans who got wounded by buying a viola. It was always purple.  Purple Heart Day commemorates the military people who were wounded or died in military acts for the sake of the nation. In the year of 2014, there was a release in the media, which gave recognition to the Military Order of the Purple Heart.

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