CRESTVIEW — After an Oct. 8 resolution by the city council proclaiming Crestview a Purple Heart City, the appellation became official during the council’s Monday meeting when Mayor David Cadle presented a plaque from the Military Order of the Purple Heart to Council President Ben Iannucci III.
“It’s a recognition the city has taken upon itself to honor all the fallen veterans of all the wars and all the military personnel who are on active duty and are Purple Heart recipients,” Military Order of the Purple Heart Region 4 Commander Bill Everett of Baker said. “It’s quite an honor; quite an honor indeed.”
The Military Order of the Purple Heart now lists the city and Okaloosa County on its website map of nationwide Purple Heart Cities and Counties. Okaloosa County was the state’s Purple Heart County and Crestview is the county’s first Purple Heart City.
Florida has only a handful of Purple Heart Cities, “and less than 25 (exist) throughout the United States,” said Everett, whose region encompasses eight southern states. The closest communities to share the honor are Leon County and Tallahassee, and Pike County and Troy, Ala., according the order’s website.
“How fitting it was for Crestview to come on board, because there’s an awful lot of retired military and active duty personnel in the Crestview area,” Everett said. “Crestview has given up a lot of personnel in World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the Middle East.”
The ornate plaque — bearing color graphics of an American bald eagle, the U.S. Constitution and the Purple Heart medal — will hang in City Hall.
“It’s an honorary designation for a city that recognizes the commitment and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform for the defense of our liberties in our country,” Mayor David Cadle said. “It’s a way of honoring the Purple Heart recipients not just in Crestview, but throughout the nation.”
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.