The Valor Trail
The Valor Trail is a marriage of story and place for the full lineage of the Medal of Honor, from the Civil War into the 21st century. The Medal of Honor represents the very best of what we as Americans aspire to be and marrying those incredible stories to the places where we can feel closest to them, we hope to inspire a new generation to live up to our highest promise and purpose.
It is envisioned to include far more than battlefields, recognizing that many other sites are profoundly connected to the lives and legacies of recipients. Plaques or signs – as well as entries on a digital trail – could be appropriate at birthplaces or in hometowns, at statues, cemeteries or namesake sites – even in museums with relevant exhibits and collections. We even hope to create exhibit materials that can travel the country, sharing the legacy of the Medal and its recipients.
There is power in place, a unique ability for landscapes to teach meaningful and compelling lessons to those who follow in the footsteps of history. If well preserved and interpreted, Medal of Honor sites can be living memorials, pilgrim places, where honor and respect are paid to those who sacrificed on our behalf. Few Americans have the opportunity to visit Omaha Beach or the mountains of Afghanistan, but those who sacrificed in such remote places are nonetheless in our thoughts at sites we can visit.
Both the Trust and the Society are committed to marrying history with the latest technology, making the past compelling and resonant. With interactive maps, recipient reflections and parallel stories designed to highlight the brotherhood of service across centuries, the Medal of Honor Valor Trail will bring the past to life and offer unique educational opportunities and character development mechanisms. As more and more sites step forward to join the movement, we will work toward a comprehensive mobile repository of the places and stories that make up a world of valor.