SEATTLE, Nov. 5 /PRNewswire/ — A new memorial to America’s most-esteemed veterans – Congressional Medal of Honor recipients – will be dedicated at the University of Washington in Seattle on Veterans Day, Wednesday, Nov. 11 at 10 a.m.
The Medal of Honor is America’s highest and rarest award for military valor, presented just 3,448 times since the Civil War. Eight alumni of the UW are recipients.
“The Medal of Honor recipients are examples of selfless service, and so many made a complete sacrifice of life,” says Lee Dunbar, who helped start the campus effort in 2006 as a student and, now graduated, will return to Seattle for the unveiling. “We always need reminders as citizens that there are men and women sacrificing everything for what we enjoy.”
Alumni who hold the Medal of Honor and will return to campus for the dedication are:
Bruce Crandall, Lt. Col. (Ret.) U.S. Army
In 1965, as a helicopter pilot in Vietnam, Crandall conducted 22 rescue missions during the Battle of Ia Drang Valley to provide critical ammunition and medical evacuation. His voluntary decision to land under the most extreme fire caused other pilots to follow, saving lives with complete disregard for their own safety.
John D. “Bud” Hawk, Sgt. (Ret.), U.S. Army
In August 1944, Hawk fought German tanks and infantry as they tried to escape encirclement following the Normandy invasion. Despite a severe wound, Hawk secured a bazooka, reorganized two machine gun squads and helped crush two enemy advancements. His actions resulted in surrender and capture of more than 500 German prisoners.
Joining them will be former Vietnam prisoner of war and Washington State Senator Leo Thorsness, president of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society, the brotherhood of all who hold the medal. Keynote remarks will be delivered by Gen. Peter W. Chiarelli, vice chief of staff, United States Army.
“Medal of Honor recipients will be the first to tell you that we simply responded to a duty to leave no man behind,” says Thorsness. “We wear our medal for all veterans and are humbled by this remembrance.”
The dedication and parade culminate a three-year endeavor by UW students to recognize and celebrate their heroic alumni. Funded entirely through private contributions, TriWest Healthcare Alliance and the Apex Foundation, the $152,000 monument is designed by Mike Magrath, a UW visiting scholar in sculpture and public art, in collaboration with another sculptor, Heidi Wastweet, and landscape architect, Dodi Fredericks.
“I’m so honored that we had the opportunity to be a small part of making this happen,” said David J. McIntyre, Jr., CEO and President of TriWest, and Board Member of the Medal of Honor Foundation. “I’m particularly excited by the way in which the students, faculty and community brought this about.”
SOURCE The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation