Citizens of Nixa observed Purple Heart Day on Aug. 7.

Mayor Brian Steele issued a proclamation making Wednesday Purple Heart Day in honor of the oldest military decoration still in use. The Purple Heart was originally created as the “Badge of Military Merit” on Aug. 7, 1782 in Newburgh, New York, by Gen. George Washington. The Purple Heart was the first American service award or decoration made available to the common soldier, and is given to any member of the U.S. armed forces who is wounded or killed in combat.

The mayor’s proclamation acknowledged men and women from Nixa who “served in harm’s way in the armed forces have been vital in maintaining the freedom and the way of life,” enjoyed by the people of Nixa.

Steele read the proclamation at a ceremony at the veterans memorial at the Nixa Community Center held Aug. 6, just before the start of National Night Out.

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