Aug. 7, 2019 – Pennsylvania – Senator Pat Browne (R-Lehigh) and Representative Ryan Mackenzie (R-Lehigh/Berks) announced that August 7th has been designated as Purple Heart Day in Pennsylvania to recognize the sacrifices of those who were wounded or killed in service to their country as members of the United States Military.
The day is also designed to bring greater public awareness of the medal and its significance.
The Purple Heart Medal is awarded to military veterans who were wounded or killed in action against an enemy of the United States. The Medal was initially established as the Badge of Merit by George Washington in 1782, and is the oldest military award still given to military members.
During major wars from World War I to the present, 32,080 Pennsylvania veterans were killed in combat and more than 59,000 were wounded, making these Pennsylvanians eligible to receive the Purple Heart Medal.
“The liberty and freedoms we enjoy as Americans have been secured by the selfless sacrifices of those who have served in our nation’s military,” Senator Browne said. “It is important that we recognize and pay homage to these extraordinary sacrifices by our country’s brave men and women. It was an honor to work with Representative Mackenzie and the Military Order of the Purple Heart to establish this Day of recognition.”
“I am hopeful the designation of Purple Heart Day will encourage people all across Pennsylvania to take a moment to think about the hundreds of thousands of men and women who have suffered injuries or given their lives for our protection and our freedom,” said Mackenzie.
Browne and Mackenzie worked closely with the Pennsylvania Military Order of the Purple Heart in establishing this day. The Military Order of the Purple Heart, an organization created in 1932 by an act of Congress for U.S. war veterans, strives to foster an environment of goodwill among combat wounded veterans, promote patriotism, support legislative initiatives and provide services to all veterans and their families.
“First, I would like to thank Senator Pat Browne and Representative Ryan Mackenzie for their work in making the Purple Heart day possible for all the Veterans, like myself, who wear the Purple Heart Medal proudly,” Frank Bokan, Commander of the Pennsylvania and
Lehigh Valley Chapter #190 Military Order of the Purple Heart, said. “I think I speak for all the Combat Wounded Veterans, that it makes me proud to know Pennsylvania has not forgotten its wounded veterans. I like to think the veterans killed in action and the Purple Heart veterans who have passed away are smiling down on us today and are sharing this moment with us. I sincerely hope all Pennsylvanians take a moment on Purple Heart Day, August 7 of every year, to remember the Men and Woman who have shed their blood, and are still doing so, so we may enjoy our freedoms.”
Purple Heart Day was established by the adoption of Senate Resolution 169, sponsored by Browne, and House Resolution 391, sponsored by Mackenzie. These resolutions also designate Pennsylvania as a “Purple Heart State.” Across the United States, 23 other states have honored their combat wounded and military veterans killed in action by obtaining the Purple Heart designation with the hope of raising awareness of the many sacrifices made by our military members.
Matt Szuchyt (Senator Browne) 610-821-8468, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tricia Lehman (Representative Mackenzie) 717-772-9840, email@example.com
Frank Bokan (Military Order of the Purple Heart) firstname.lastname@example.org