What is the Medal of Honor?
What is the Medal of Honor?
The Medal of Honor is awarded* by the President in the name of Congress to a person who, while
a member of the military, distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life
or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; while engaged
in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged
in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
The deed performed must have been one of personal bravery or self-sacrifice
so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his comrades and must have involved risk of life. Incontestable
proof of the performance of the service will be exacted and each recommendation for the award of this decoration will be considered
on the standard of extraordinary merit.
Source: Chapter 3-6, Army Regulation 600-8-22 (Military Awards), dated 25
* Recipient vs. Winner: Contrary to Hollywood movies, media, writers, and
additional outlets, the Medal of Honor is awarded to an individual and not won. The
recipient, or awardee, is not engaged in a contest, sport, or game. Most individuals receive the Medal of Honor posthumously;
consequently, the Medal is received by the next-of-kin.
(Related reading below.)
Heroes: U.S. Army Medal of Honor Recipients
(Hardcover). Description: The honored few...From the bloody fields of the Civil War to the global conflicts of the modern
age, here are the stories of 100 Army Medal of Honor winners. Since its Revolution-era formation as the Continental Army,
the United States Army has earned a hard-won reputation for duty, courage, and brotherhood. But there are those whose exploits
in combat have set them apart, earning them the most sacred and honored citation there is-the Medal of Honor. Continued below...
From the killing fields of the Civil War, through World Wars I and II, to the jungles of Vietnam and America's
fight against terrorism around the world, this comprehensive book features detailed information on 100 Army Corps Medal of
Honor recipients-including many lesser-known recipients-whose courage and sacrifice in the service of their country remain
the foundations of the United States Army. Their achievements are chronicled in this complete and compelling memorial of those
who have earned the right to be called "The Bravest of the Brave."
American Civil War Medal of Honor Recipients:
Recommended Reading: Medal of Honor: Portraits of Valor Beyond the
Call of Duty (Hardcover), by
Peter Collier (Author), Nick Del Calzo (Photographer). Description: First published on Veteran’s Day 2003 to glowing
reviews (“Powerful”—Seattle Post-Intelligencer), energetic cross-country events, and instant national
bestseller status, Medal of Honor has now been revised, updated, and augmented into an even more important and newsworthy
second edition. New features include. Continued below...
A multimedia DVD rich in historical footage and first-person
reflections of these ultimate acts of courage
Full coverage of 22 additional Medal recipients by National
Book Award nominee Peter Collier
Heart-rending new portraits by award-winning photographer Nick Del Calzo
Introductory essay by Victor Davis Hanson, military history
scholar and author of A War Like No Other, The Western Way of War, and
The Soul of Battle
The 116 living Medal of Honor recipients fought in conflicts from
World War II to Vietnam, serving in every branch of the armed services, and here is their ultimate
record—the only book sponsored and endorsed by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation.
the Civil War more than 39 million men and women have answered the call to serve. Of those, 3,440 served with such uncommon
valor and extraordinary courage that they were presented with the Medal of Honor, the nation's highest military award. Each
of their heroic actions is as unique as the recipient. Journey with more than one hundred of America's living Medal of Honor recipients as they are honored and as their bravery
is recounted by best-selling author Peter Collier. It is presented in duotone portraits by award-winning photographer Nick
Ordinary Heroes: A Tribute to Congressional Medal of Honor Recipients: Reflections of Freedom, Faith, Duty and the Heroic
Possibilities of the Everyday Human Spirit (Hardcover). Description: This collection of moving black-and-white photographs
of recipients of the Medal of Honor shows not the glory of war, but the underlying spirit and humanity of true heroism. Forty-eight
portraits are combined with comments, observations, and statements from the recipients of America's highest military honor. Continued below...
This compilation of words and
pictures of men who served in the U.S. Navy, Air Force, Army, and Marine Corps is both humbling and poignant. Their actions
and lives vary as much as the conflicts (World War II, Korea, and Vietnam) and include a conscientious objector who never wielded
a weapon and a man known as the "Last Eagle," as he was the last World War II pilot to retire. Each recipient's full official
citation is included in the appendix.
Recommended Reading: Gettysburg Heroes: Perfect Soldiers, Hallowed Ground (Hardcover). Description: The Civil War generation saw its world in ways startlingly different from our own. In these
essays, Glenn W. LaFantasie examines the lives and experiences of several key personalities who gained fame during and after
the war. The battle of Gettysburg is the thread that ties
these Civil War lives together. Gettysburg was a personal
turning point, though each person was affected differently. Continued below…
in its approach, the book captures the human drama of the war and shows how this group of individuals--including Abraham Lincoln,
James Longstreet, Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, William C. Oates, and others--endured or succumbed to the war and, willingly
or unwillingly, influenced its outcome. Concurrently, it shows how the war shaped the lives of these individuals, putting
them through ordeals they never dreamed they would face or survive.
Beyond Glory: Medal of Honor Heroes in Their Own Words. Description: This New
York Times best-selling account of battlefield courage celebrates the larger-than-life sacrifices
of those awarded the nation's highest honor for valor in combat. Exclusive interviews with these twenty-four men—firsthand
accounts of battlefield sacrifice from the greatest generation to Vietnam,
along with before-and-after stories—form the core of this classic work. Continued below...
The recipients represent a cross-section
as diverse as America itself—officers and enlisted men; African Americans, Hispanics, and
Caucasians; men who went on to become famous (Daniel Inouye, James Stockdale, Bob Kerrey) and others who returned proudly
to small towns. Beyond Glory, in the voices of these heroes, is a testament to the courage of the American nation. About the Author: Larry Smith is a veteran editor with the New York
Times and Parade magazine, where he was managing editor. Eddie Adams is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer.