NEWBURGH – Recently, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18) joined dozens of local veteran leaders, Gold Star families, and Purple Heart recipients at the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor in New Windsor to celebrate the official signing into law of the bipartisan and bicameral National Purple Heart Hall of Honor Commemorative Coin Act.
The bill will honor the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor and all our Purple Heart recipients with a commemorative coin provided by the U.S. Mint and produced at the United States Mint at West Point. Proceeds from the sale of the coin will be directed to the National Purple Heart Honor Mission, Inc. for tribute projects and educational programs that raise awareness about the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor and pay tribute to the sacrifices of all our servicemen and women who were wounded or killed in combat.
“The Purple Heart Commemorative Coin is a big win for the Hudson Valley and Purple Heart recipients across America,” said Rep. Maloney. “This bipartisan legislation is the result of years of hard work. It not only honors our veterans but also brings business to the West Point Mint right here in our backyard. I am humbled to have passed this legislation through the House and Senate and into law.”
“The National Purple Heart Commemorative Coin will be an extraordinary opportunity to pay tribute to our heroes who have given so much for our nation. These special coins will honor our Purple Heart recipients’ service and sacrifice, and help the National Purple Heart Honor Mission expand its programming to ensure our combat-wounded veterans and those killed-in-action are remembered for generations to come. We look forward to working with the U.S. Mint to create a coin series that is truly emblematic of our heroes. We also thank Congressman Maloney and his staff for their work in making this unique tribute a reality,” said Col. Russ Vernon (U.S. Army, Ret.), executive director for the National Purple Heart Honor Mission.
“The minting of these commemorative coins is an historic recognition for America’s combat wounded and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. These coins will not only be a tribute to the brave men and women who have given their all for our freedom, but they will also act as a catalyst for people to learn more about the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor and fund other programing that pays tribute to those who have been awarded the Purple Heart. On behalf of the National Purple Heart Honor Mission and America’s Purple Heart recipients, I want to thank Congressman Maloney for the perseverance he showed in ensuring these Commemorative Coins became law,” said Richie Lay, Purple Heart recipient, and Chairman of the Board of Directors for the National Purple Heart Honor Mission.
The National Purple Heart Hall of Honor Commemorative Coin Act authorizes the U.S. Treasury to mint $5 gold coins, $1 silver coins, and half-dollar clad coins at the United States Mint at West Point for the 2022 year. After production costs are recouped by the U.S. Treasury, proceeds from sales of the coin will be directed to the National Purple Heart Honor Mission, Inc. Those resources will help the organization augment their “Honor Flight style” Purple Heart Patriot Project program and create a new Mobile Tribute and Education Center that will visit communities across the nation bringing the story of the Purple Heart to a whole new generation of Americans.
The Purple Heart is one of the oldest and most recognized American military medals, awarded to service members who were killed or wounded by enemy action. General George Washington named West Point the most important strategic position in America during the Revolutionary War which is when the military decoration first originated. The National Purple Heart Hall of Honor’s mission is to collect and preserve the stories of Purple Heart recipients from all branches of service and across generations to serve as a living memorial to their sacrifice.
The National Purple Heart Hall of Honor is operated by the New York-New Jersey Palisades Interstate Park Commission. The hall’s work is supported by the National Purple Heart Honor Mission, a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose goal is to honor America’s Purple Heart recipients, through various outreach and educational programs, including promoting visitation at the Hall of Honor. The National Purple Heart Honor Mission conceived of the museum and worked for more two decades to secure necessary funding for its development and expansion. The National Purple Heart Honor Mission also undertakes other forms of outreach to honor the nation’s estimated two million Purple Heart recipients, such as the Purple Heart Patriot Project that brings Purple Heart recipients from across the country to New York for a multi-day tribute program.