The Purple Heart is the oldest award in our military and immediately identifiable by its purple color and the profile view of the bust of our first president General George Washington. This is extremely fitting considering the award’s origin. Originally known as the Badge of Merit and established by George Washington himself for, “not only instances of unusual gallantry in battle, but also extraordinary fidelity and essential service in any way”. Washington himself only handed out 3 of these very prestigious awards himself and it was the highest award in our military at the time.
So when did the criteria of being wounded and its current utilization come about? Well another great general in our United States Military made it his goal to revive the award. General MacArthur spearheaded the reviving of the award which was announced in 1932. A Soldier could request the award if at any time after 1917 they had been awarded both a Meritorious Service Citation Certificate and an Army wound ribbon. A soldier could also request the award if they had been authorized wound chevrons and not been awarded the Army Wound Ribbon. Once the new criteria had been established MacArthur himself was the first soldier to receive the award.
Regardless of the criteria the Purple Heart has always been a symbol of patriotism and valor to the American people, and for that reason it is regarded as an award of sacrafice to our gret country today. I know that personally I immediate have a certain level of respect that I give to someone who is driving a vehicle with a Purple Heart license plate. I know that the owner of that vehicle was put in a danger before the enemy and risked their life in some way defending our country, and our freedom. The soldier probably had a family, a mother, a father, wife, husband, or children that they were fighting for and they were wounded ensuring that those people would be safe even though they probably worried about his/her safety every night. The soldier more than likely had downplayed the danger that they were in so as not to worry the family waiting for them at home.
At the end of the day the current Purple Heart exemplifies a military member’s willingness to put the needs of others before their own and acknowledges that the recipient may have lived through the encounter but was willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice.
Vision Stike Wear put forth an amazing design to honor those who have recieved this award throughout the years. In the center of the design is the very destinquishable medal with the bust of George Washington at the center. The words Available to All stream across the top and the bottom is highlighted by the words Desired by None. If you would like to purchase one of these designs for yourself, or a special patriot that you know just follow the link below.