Natick, Mass. –Service members, Civilians and Veterans recognized and honored Medal of Honor recipients in a ceremony in Hunter auditorium at Natick Soldier Systems Center, Friday, Mar. 25 as part of National Medal of Honor Day.
National Medal of Honor Day was established on March 25th, 1991, as a day to foster appreciation and recognition of Medal of Honor recipients. March 25th is the anniversary of the first presentations of a Medal of Honor during the U.S. Civil War.
During the ceremony, all branches of the military were represented as service members read aloud the 34 recipients after whom the buildings and streets of the installation are named.
“It is important to remember, support, and honor recipients and their sacrifice by sharing the stories and values inherent in them,” said Lt. Col. Mark Miller, Chaplain Integrator. “This ceremony, which includes the wreath and its symbolism, is a way for us to commemorate them and the history we have here at Natick. Each day we drive on to the installation these names and the values they represent should remind us to serve with a purpose.”
Since the first Medal of Honor Mar. 25, 1863, there have been 3,530 Medals of Honor awarded across all branches of the United States Armed Forces. Originally established in 1862 to give recognition to those who distinguished themselves “conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity, at the risk of their lives, above and beyond the call of duty” in combat with an enemy of the United States, it is the highest award for military valor in action and was first signed into existence during the Civil War.
Brig. Gen. David Trybula, Natick Soldier Systems Center Senior Commander spoke about the legacy and sacrifice of those whose names adorn the installation’s facilities and streets.
“Today, we not only observe, but we honor the rich legacy of these Medal of Honor recipients whose history surrounds us all,” said Trybula. “As you travel through the buildings here in Natick, I encourage you to find the dedication plaque for the Medal of Honor recipient that building is named after and read it so that their legacy to lives on.”
The Natick Soldier Systems Center’s mission is “One Team advancing innovative technology for Today and Tomorrow.” As the only active-duty Army Installation in New England, the NSSC’s focus is to enhance, empower, and enable the Joint Warfighter from all branches of the DoD as well as the Coast Guard. NSSC is home to premiere and unique facilities that support the research, development, and engineering to sustain current Warfighter systems and develop future systems. Known as the Army’s center for Soldier-related research and development, NSSC’s greatest asset and top priority is our people – expert military and civilian personnel that come from all six New England states, many of whom hold graduate or higher-level degrees in more than 70 disciplines.