Governor declares Pennsylvania a Purple Heart State, honors veterans
By REPUBLICAN & HERALD, POTTSVILLE, PA. Published: August 7, 2019
ANNVILLE, Pa. (Tribune News Service) — Gov. Tom Wolf officially designated Pennsylvania as a Purple Heart State, demonstrating “extreme gratitude to the more than 91,000 Pennsylvania men and women either killed or wounded in war defending our freedom since 1917,” reads a news release from the governor’s office.
Starting Wednesday, Pennsylvania will honor these veterans every Aug. 7, which is national Purple Heart Day. The annual recognition is an opportunity for Americans to pause to remember and honor those who were either wounded on the battlefield or paid the ultimate sacrifice.
“Through our nation’s history, Pennsylvanians have selflessly fought to preserve our freedom and protect our borders,” Wolf was quoted in the release. “Most have safely come home, while others have either fallen or were wounded. This is an elite group of heroes who deserves their own special day of recognition where we can all honor their bravery and incredible sacrifice.”
The Purple Heart is given to military members who are wounded by an instrument of war in the hands of the enemy and posthumously to the next of kin in the name of those who are killed in action or die of wounds received in action. It is specifically a combat decoration.
This declaration means that Wolf has “secured the legacy of every Pennsylvanian who has sacrificed with their life or with injury in defense of America,” said Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. “This day also gives us an opportunity to remember the families of Purple Heart recipients who have sacrificed in their own right.”
About 1.8 million American service members have received the Purple Heart.