It has been said that war memorials consecrate ideas and battlefields consecrate events. We would add that the military medals and rank decorations that we award to our soldiers and veterans consecrate individual values and deeds. The impact of these awards goes far beyond the individual and has a much broader effect.
It has long been recognized by military leaders that medals, rank and decorations instill a sense of pride which is an integral component of the warrior ethos. For pride is a force multiplier. It is the ingredient that makes soldiers stand tall, walk with a special stride and purpose, brag to family and friends and others about their team, and fight shoulder to shoulder with their buddies in the harshest of conditions. It is often the difference between victory and defeat.
I thank all the military personnel for the hardship they face when going into combat. You deserve the best.