KNOXVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 30, 2022 – Nearly half of the 65 living Medal of Honor Recipients and their families will travel to Knoxville, Sept. 6-10 for the Medal of Honor Celebration, a week of activities focused on reuniting the Recipients of the United States’ highest military award for valor. The events will allow Recipients to reconnect with each other, commemorate those Recipients who have passed, conduct Congressional Medal of Honor Society business and engage with the Knoxville and East Tennessee communities. Knoxville previously hosted the Celebration in 2014.
“It’s quite an honor to have Medal of Honor Recipients returning to Knoxville for the Celebration,” said Joe Thompson, chairman of the Medal of Honor Celebration Committee. “The Knoxville community is ready to open our city to these American heroes, and we are excited for the impact their visit will make.”
Recipients will kick off the week with visits to nine East Tennessee schools in support of the Character Development Program, which teaches courage, commitment, integrity, sacrifice, citizenship and patriotism to students through educationally grounded lessons. Black Hawk helicopters will transport the Recipients to the schools to interact with assemblies of students and to discuss these six values embodied in the Medal of Honor.
Other events include a private memorial service, a panel discussion of veteran-related topics at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, a Citizen Honors Awards ceremony to recognize ordinary citizens who have demonstrated extraordinary acts of heroism, as well as local tours and culinary experiences.
The culminating event of the week is the Patriot Awards Gala on Sept. 10, where the Congressional Medal of Honor Society will give the Patriot Award to former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley. The Patriot Award is the highest individual award bestowed by the Society. “Top Gun: Maverick” Actor Glen Powell will receive the Bob Hope Award for Entertainment, NBC News Pentagon Correspondent Courtney Kube will receive the John R. “Tex” McCrary Award for Excellence in Journalism, and Dr. Timothy Miller from Operation Mend will receive the Distinguished Citizen Award. Actor and Director Gary Sinise, who is actively involved with the veteran community through The Gary Sinise Foundation, will serve as master of ceremonies.
“As a proud military spouse, I know that the men and women of our military are our greatest treasure,” said Haley. “Thanks to their service and sacrifice we can live in the greatest country in the world. It’s my honor to join them at the Patriot Award Gala.”
September will mark the second time the Medal of Honor Celebration has been held in Knoxville, which last welcomed recipients in 2014. For more information about the Celebration visit mohknoxville2022.org.
About The Congressional Medal of Honor Society
The Congressional Medal of Honor Society, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is dedicated to preserving the legacy of the Medal of Honor and its Recipients, inspiring Americans, and supporting the Recipients as they connect with communities across the country. Chartered by Congress in 1958, its membership consists exclusively of those individuals who have received the Medal of Honor. There are 65 living Recipients.
The Society carries out its mission through outreach, education and preservation programs, including the Medal of Honor Museum, Congressional Medal of Honor Outreach Programs, the Congressional Medal of Honor Character Development Program, and the Congressional Medal of Honor Citizen Honors Awards for Valor and Service. The Society’s programs and operations are funded by donations.
As part of Public Law 106-83, the Medal of the Honor Memorial Act, the Medal of Honor Museum, which is co-located with the Congressional Medal of Honor Society’s headquarters on board the U.S.S. Yorktown at Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, was designated as one of three national Medal of Honor sites.
Learn more about the Medal of Honor and the Congressional Medal of Honor Society’s initiatives at cmohs.org.