Commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Department of Missouri, Everett Kelly made his third trip to Pulaski County in as many months on March 25, 2013 to present Pulaski County Commissioners with a plaque and flag recognizing the county as a Purple Heart County. Pulaski County is the first county in Missouri to receive this designation, joining in the states effort to honor those veterans who have been wounded or killed while in military service to our country. The declaration follows legislative action which made Missouri’s entire sections of Interstate 44 and 70 a Purple Heart Trail.
A Purple Heart County is a community with “great admiration and gratitude for the men and women who have served this country.”
Commander Kelly, a two-time Purple Heart recipient, along with other Purple Heart recipients, a color guard, and Presiding Pulaski County Commissioner Gene Newkirk raised the County’s Purple Heart flag above the courthouse.
Commander Kelly had previously journeyed to Pulaski County to designate the City of St. Robert and the City of Waynesville as Purple Heart Cities. St. Robert received its designation January 7, 2013, and sister city Waynesville, received its designation March 21, 2013.
The Purple Heart Trail was established in 1992 by the Military Order of the Purple Heart to be a symbolic trail throughout all 50 states to commemorate and honor all men and women who have been wounded or killed in combat while serving in the U.S. armed forces. The Purple Heart Trail originates in Mount Vernon, Va., and traverses the United States to California.
The designation of both St. Robert and Waynesville as Purple Heart Cities, in addition to Pulaski County being recognized as a Purple Heart County, is another indicator of the prevalent patriotism that runs deep in Pulaski County USA.