Congressman John Salazar Receives Inspirational Leadership Award From The Military Order Of The Purple Heart
U.S. Rep. John Salazar (CO-3) received the Inspirational Leadership award from the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH). Every year, one member of Congress is awarded this honor.
"I am humbled by this award," Rep. Salazar said. "It will always be my duty to ensure that Congress provides the services and assistance our veterans and their families need and deserve."
Last year, Salazar took the lead in passing the Stolen Valor Act which penalizes those who fraudulently claim to be a decorated veteran or wear a medal of honor.
"The Purple Heart is only awarded for genuine acts of courage," Salazar said.
"It is our job to protect the honor and integrity of our veterans, to make sure the memory of their heroism is not tarnished."
Tom Poulter, the National Commander for MOPH, who recognized Salazar at the ceremony said:
"In recognition of his inspirational leadership and dedicated service to American's military service members and America's veterans. Representative Salazar distinguished himself by sponsoring legislation that protects awards which members of the military earn during their service to our country. Due to Representative Salazar's leadership, the Stolen Valor Act was passed by both Houses of Congress and became law in 2006. His concern for protecting military decorations and the men and women who earn them is indicative of his support for our troops and our veterans. Representative Salazar reflects the best of those who serve in our government and is a credit to the state of Colorado, the Congress and the United States."
The Military Order of the Purple Heart was formed in 1932 for the protection and mutual interest of all who received the Purple Heart military award. It is the only veterans' service organization comprised strictly of combat veterans. The Purple Heart is the oldest standing military recognition in the world. In 1782 General George Washington established the "Badge for Military Merit," which in 1932 was revived as the Purple Heart.
The city of Pueblo, in Salazar's 3rd Congressional District, was designated "America's Home of Heroes" by Congress, because it is home to more medal of honor recipients than any where else in the country. The district is also home to more than 70,000 veterans. Salazar is the only military veteran from Colorado's Congressional delegation (U.S. Army from 1973- 1976) and his son has served in the National Guard.