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Light to Unite (Purple Heart Project)

November 11, 2022 @ 5:00 PM 5:30 PM


FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Jeff Krakow 920-210-2388


Columbus, WI – In advance of the upcoming Veterans Day holiday, Columbus, WI announced that Columbus, WI Civil War Monument will be illuminated with purple lights on November 11 as part of Operation Light To Unite, a nation-wide collaborative initiative to support military service members who have been killed in action or wounded, whereby receiving the Purple Heart Medal, as well as raise awareness supporting the adoption of the Honoring Purple Heart Recipients Act of 2022 (HR 5172 and SR 4006) directing the Department of Defense to include Purple Heart recipients in its database for awards of valor.

“We all have great respect, admiration, and the utmost gratitude for the men and women who have served selflessly in the Armed Forces; the greater sacrifice is that of being killed or wounded,” said Mayor Arnold. “The Purple Heart is a well-established recognition with our military, from its creation by General George Washington, 240 years ago, to its re-establishment by General Douglas McArthur, 90 years ago. We light this monument in support of the Honoring Purple Heart Recipients Act and seek Congress to direct the Department of Defense to roster the Purple Heart Recipients in its awards of valor registry.”

The collaborative initiative is coordinated by the National Flag Foundation (NFF), the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH), and the Marine Corps League (MCL). The Purple Heart medal is presented to service members who have been wounded or killed as a result of enemy action while serving in the U.S. military. A Purple Heart is a solemn distinction and means a service member has greatly sacrificed themselves, or paid the ultimate price, while in the line of duty.

In addition to lighting this Columbus Monument on November 11, the National Colors will be presented by Wisconsin Globe & Anchor Detachment #359 of the Marine Corps League. This will be joined by the singing of the National Anthem by Ann Vincent.

Residents and businesses are encouraged to participate by simply illuminating their homes and/or businesses with purple lights (or red, white and blue lights). This can be an exterior light that neighbors and passersby see, or interior lights that displays the unity for our Purple Heart recipients. Residents are invited to share their participation on social media using the hashtag #LightToUnite.

“Operation Light To Unite is a simple way to express our collective recognition for our Purple Heart recipients,” said MCL Detachment Senior Vice Commandant Jeff Krakow. “We encourage everyone to join us in displaying our purple lights (or red, white and blue lights) for our veterans and to also reflect on how we support the Honoring Purple Heart Recipients Act.”

According to the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor, more than 1.8 million Purple Heart medals have been presented to service members since the award was created in 1782. The award was revived in 1932, designated primarily as a combat decoration for the Army or Army Air Corps only, recognizing commendable action as well as those wounded or killed in combat. In 1942, President Roosevelt and the War Department further defined the qualifications for receiving a Purple Heart, designating it for those who were wounded or killed in action. The eligibility of the award has expanded to all military branches of service and gave authorization to present posthumous Purple Heart medals.

Visit the National Flag Foundation at: Light To Unite – National Flag Foundation – https://nationalflagfoundation.org/lite-to-unite.


November 11, 2022
5:00 PM – 5:30 PM