Since it was first awarded during the Civil War to the current battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, Medal of Honor recipients have displayed tremendous courage, an unfailing determination to succeed, and a humbling willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice. It is telling that so many Medal of Honor recipients received the award posthumously. These soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsman embody the best of American values and ideals.
Medal of Honor recipients are the foremost example of greatness in service and sacrifice. Their bravery and humble strength continues to reassure our nation of the strength of its character and ideals even in these difficult times. We owe these heroes a debt of gratitude that our nation can never fully repay. So, it is on this day that we salute that fact and celebrate their lives and heroic actions that have placed them amongst the "bravest of the brave." We must never forget their sacrifice and will always keep the Fallen and their families in our thoughts and prayers.