The purpose of being a Purple Heart City is to honor military personnel wounded or killed in combat.
The Purple Heart is specifically a combat decoration and it is our nation’s oldest military medal. It was first created by General George Washington in 1782 and was known as the Badge of Military Merit. It was first awarded to three soldiers in Newburgh, N.Y. The Badge of Military Merit was made of cloth and it is the predecessor of the Purple Heart medal.
The current Purple Heart medal was developed by General Douglas MacArthur in 1932. The new design was created by Miss Elisabeth Will, an Army heraldic specialist in the Office of the Quartermaster General. The revived form is of metal, instead of perishable cloth, made in the shape of a rich purple heart bordered with gold, with a bust of Washington in the center and the Washington coat-of-arms at the top.
The Purple Heart is awarded to members of the armed forces of the U.S who are wounded by an instrument of war in the hands of the enemy and posthumously to the next of kin in the name of those who are killed in action or die of wounds received in action. The heritage it represents is sacred to those who understand the price paid to wear it.
Council Meeting November 20, 2017 [Item 8119]
Purple Heart Website
Location of Purple Heart in Rochester, MN