The Medal of Honor Tree Dedication Ceremony held Friday

Published: Apr. 21, 2023 at 6:18 PM CDT
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GAINESVILLE, Texas (KXII) - 56 trees line up Gainesville’s Homegrown Hero’s Walking Trail, and every tree honors a different Medal of Honor recipient.

Friday morning, in a tree dedication ceremony, the Gainesville community welcomed 8 new honorees to the lineup.

“We bring them out, and school children come out and speak to them, and they’ve studied each recipient and they’ve written stories about them, and they take photos with them, and then they get a chance to talk to the recipient one on one,” Gainesville’s mayor, Tommy Moore, who is also the president of the Medal of Honor Host City program said.

He shared that the morning was a great experience for the students and the veterans.

“They love talking to youth, and they love instilling character into young people. It’s the patriotism and the sacrifice that they bring to this community that helps us be so successful,” Moore said.

To make the ceremony even more special, the American Heritage Girls Troop decorated each tree which has a dedication plaque beneath it.

Troop coordinator for the organization, Ellen Samek said the ceremony allows for a moment to respect the work of those who served.

“If our kids today can understand the value of that service, sacrifice and integrity and patriotism, then as we move forward in the future, they are in a much better place with a stronger country than if they don’t,” Samek said.

Honoring, not just the medal of honor recipients that were present Friday, but all of them.