What is Visions of Valor?
Visions of Valor is the first and largest exhibit of its kind to honor the commitment and character of Medal of Honor recipients; our nation's highest military decoration for valor. This museum-quality exhibit of black-and-white photographs from famed portrait photographer, Nick Del Calzo, is intended to educate the public about the Medal of Honor and to perpetuate the patriotism, courage and honor of its recipients.
"The humility and heroism of these great patriots shines through every photograph, and it is our extreme pleasure to be able to share their incredible faces and, indeed, incredible stories with this portrait collection."
— David J. McIntyre, TriWest President & CEO
TriWest is honored to have donated the Visions of Valor collection-containing 140 portraits depicting America's Medal of Honor recipients. These portraits depict all that is noble and brave about America's most decorated heroes.
The permanent collection is displayed at The Pentagon's Hall of Heroes in Arlington, Va. The official presentation of the Visions of Valor collection from TriWest to the Pentagon occurred February 3, 2006.
The Visions of Valor collection is featured in the book Medal of Honor - Portraits of Valor Beyond the Call of Duty. For more information on purchasing the book, click here.
What is The Medal of Honor?
The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the President of the United States to our nation's bravest soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coastguardsmen. It is bestowed on a member of the United States Armed Forces who distinguishes himself or herself, conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.
"As a six-year prisoner of war, I learned that freedom is our most important commodity. We keep it through personal responsibility. Freedom is the flip-side of responsibility."
— Medal of Honor recipient Leo Thorsness
Members of all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces are eligible to receive the Medal of Honor for personal acts of valor, and each service branch has a unique design of the Medal. Medal of Honor recipients of the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Coast Guard receive the Navy version of the medal
The Medal of Honor is presented personally to the recipient by the President of the United States; or, in the case of posthumous awards, to a survivor or next of kin. Due to its high stature, the Medal of Honor is afforded special protection under U.S. law against any unauthorized adornment, sale, or manufacture, which includes any associated ribbon or badge.
There are two distinct means for awarding the Medal of Honor. The first and most common is nomination by a Service Member in the chain of command, followed by approval at each level of command. The other method is nomination by a member of Congress (generally at the request of a constituent) and approval by a special act of Congress. In either case, the Medal of Honor is presented by the President on behalf of the Congress.
In American history, 3,471 Medals of Honor have been awarded. There are fewer than 80 Medal of Honor recipients living today.