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Hartselle Enquirer

Day of honor…

Woody Carpenter uses a pointer to identify articles on the POW/MIA as George Mills explains their meaning. | Clif Knight

Purple Heart recipients from Morgan and Cullman Counties were singled out for special recognition at the Purple Heart Memorial in Hartselle’s Sparkman Park on Saturday.

The memorial service was sponsored by the Finis J. Self Chapter of the Order of the Purple Heart and was attended by more than 150 veterans, elected officials and family members and friends of Purple Heart recipients.

Key speaker Brigadier General Joseph Stringham gave a brief history of the Purple Heart award and challenged veterans and their families and friends to honor and protect its legacy.

“The Purple Heart decoration is the one that is most frequently awarded and probably the one that is most often abused,” he stated. “There is probably an equal number of our brothers who were wounded in battle but chose to remain with their units. When questioned as to why they didn’t make their wound a matter of record they simply shrugged it off and said they were just glad to be alive.”

“Unfortunately,” he added, “the theft of decorations has crept into the forces. “We must guard against it; it’s our legacy.”

Stringham also spoke out against the leak of top security information at the national level.

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