Since it was first handed out in 1863, America’s most prestigious award, the Medal of Honor, has graced the chest of many a brave soldier. This highest of military honors has been awarded 3,517 times and 19 of those recipients received double awards.
It is often referred to as the “Congressional Medal of Honor.” because the award is given in the name of Congress but it is usually presented by the sitting president.
The medal is awarded to any soldier who has distinguished themselves “conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.”
Sadly, many of these medals are awarded posthumously, either because the intended recipient died in battle or because a large portion of time has passed before being recognized for their acts.
Although National Medal of Honor Day is annually celebrated on the 25th of March, we’d like to take a look at some of the brave souls whose chests the Medal of Honor has graced and should be honored all year round.