HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. - Maj. Gen. Joseph C. Carter, The Adjutant General and State Command Sgt. Maj. David Costa of the Massachusetts National Guard award the Purple Heart to Sgt. Brian Ohler of the 1st Battalion, 182 Infantry Regiment, Massachusetts Army National Guard during a ceremony, here, March 8, 2012.
Ohler deployed with the 182nd Infantry Regiment in March of 2011 and was wounded by an IED attack in September 2011.
The Purple Heart Medal is an American decoration. It is the oldest military decoration in the world presently in use and the first American award made available to the common Soldier. It was initially created as the Badge of Military Merit by General George Washington. In the summer of 1782, General Washington was ordered by the Continental Congress to cease recognizing outstanding valor by means of this badge. The United States War Department revived the Purple Heart decoration on February 22, 1932.
The Purple Heart is awarded to members of the Armed Forces of the United States who are wounded by an instrument of war in the hands of the enemy.