August 7 is Purple Heart Day. The Purple Heart is a U.S. military decoration that recognizes service members who are wounded or killed in action against an enemy. The U.S. armed forces have awarded approximately 1.7 million Purple Hearts. We observe Purple Heart Day to honor these veterans, their valor and their sacrifice.
Intrepid’s crew suffered its greatest number of casualties on November 25, 1944. Two kamikaze airplanes crashed into the ship, killing 69 men and wounding at least 85 others. Ernest Fleshman was awarded the Purple Heart for sustaining burns during the attack. Shown here are his ribbon authorization card and a newspaper clipping about his return to the ship after he recovered from his injuries. The Intrepid Museum remembers the service of Ernest Fleshman and all the other men who were injured or killed while serving on board Intrepid.
The Intrepid Museum thanks the family of Ernest F. Fleshman for donating his collection to us, and we thank all of the veterans who have received a Purple Heart.