CRP Blog

Friday, March 27, 2009

Land of the Brave: Medal of Honor Day

In 2007, Congress designated March 25 as National Medal of Honor Day. It was that date in 1863 when Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton presented six Union Army soldiers with the first-ever Medals of Honor. More than 3,400 Medals of Honor have since been awarded up through the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Every recipient since the Battle of Mogadishu in 1993 has earned the decoration posthumously. The Medal of Honor is the nation's highest military award for battlefield heroism. Today there are only 98 living recipients of the Medal of Honor (out of a nation of 306 million people). The oldest living recipient is nearly 100. The youngest is 58. And since March 25, 2007 - the first designated "National Medal of Honor Day" - 13 recipients have died.

(With thanks to columnist W. Thomas Smith Jr.)

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