The Purple Heart Medal is a United States military decoration awarded by the President to those who have been wounded or killed while serving with the U.S. military. Being presented with this medal is a way to honor these military members with their courageous acts in the name of their country. This medal is something to be proud of, and wear with honor. That being said, one might wonder why anyone would part with their medal if they were to receive one? That is one of the many thoughts and questions that occurred in our minds when a Purple Heart Medal was left on Washelli’s very own “Doughboy” statue, which stands tall in front of the Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery at Evergreen-Washelli.
The “Doughboy” statue was given as a gift to the Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery at Washelli, as a dedication to all that have served. The “Doughboy” depicts a young soldier as “just returning from a victory- with a grim smile on his face”. The statue holds the cremated remains of veterans and their spouses. Needless to say, this is a treasured and loved statue to many, especially veterans because of what the statue represents; those who have made it home from service, and those who did not have the chance to return.
When the Purple Heart Medal was left upon the foot of the “Doughboy” statue anonymously, it was clear that it was left in a manner of respect for the Veterans and those who currently serve in the military. Although this was understood, we are still left one to ponder what the thought process might have been behind leaving this medal here, and why it was left anonymously? Perhaps the person who left the medal had previously earned it in the line of duty, and was ready to share it with others. Perhaps the medal had been passed down to them, and they thought that it should be with those who deserved it- such as the fallen soldiers in our Veterans Cemetery. Maybe there are cremated remains of someone in the statue who the person believed deserved the medal. Maybe the person left the medal anonymously because they simply wanted to honor the veterans as a whole? The mind is truly left to wonder, what the true meaning behind this gesture was, because there could be so many possibilities and explanations.
Although it might never be possible for us to fully understand this gesture without knowing who left this medal, we can say that this medal is something that we will treasure and display in our Funeral Home for time to come. There have been anonymous items left in the past that Evergreen-Washelli has speculated as to what the significance is, and what it means to the individual who left it. Because there are so many stories and people, it is an interesting and fun thought thinking you will truly never know what you could find.