WHITTEMORE -- Purple Heart Day honors the men and women who have been wounded or killed in military service. That day is observed Aug. 7, under Iowa law.
A Purple Heart Day celebration will be held at Whittemore American Legion Post 425, sponsored by the Sons of the American Legion, Post 425.
An Open House for Purple Heart recipients, veterans and the public will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Post Home. There is no cost for refreshments for Purple Heart Recipients. Snacks will be served at no cost.
Purple Heart Day
The Medal of Honor that is now the Purple Heart actually began as the "Military Badge of Merit". On Aug. 7, 1782 in Newburgh, NY, General George Washington designed a new badge of distinction for enlisted men and noncommissioned officers. They were awarded for "any singularly meritorious action."
On Jan. 7, 1931, a new design was reopened. Ms. Elizabeth Will, an army heraldic specialist in the Office of the Quarter, created the design sketch for the present medal of the Purple Heart. It consists of a purple enameled heart within a bronze quarter inch border showing a relief profile of George Washington in continental uniform. Washington's family coat of arms adorns the medal, along with an inscription inside the heart that reads, "For Military Merit."
The Purple Heart is awarded to any member of the Armed Forces that has been wounded or killed, died as a result of a wound in battle, or otherwise designated by the President of the United States. This now includes persons killed as a result of friendly fire.
"We celebrate Purple Heart Day as our patriotic duty to remember and recognize those people willing to serve our country, no matter the price," said Ron Askland, Commander, Sons of the American Legion, Post 425,