ARLINGTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) - Arlington and Denver have been selected as the two finalists to become the new home for the $150 million National Medal of Honor Museum.
The National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation is expected to make a final decision by September, according to a news release from the museum.
Joe Daniels, President and CEO of the National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation, said, "Arlington and Denver are two exceptional cities, and we have been overwhelmed by the response we have received from their state and local officials about this important undertaking. Public and private leaders from both cities have expressed a strong desire to help the museum in its mission to further unite us all around what it means to be patriotic, to inspire us to find the hero within ourselves, and to preserve the stories of our nation's Medal of Honor recipients for future generations. We are deeply grateful."
The museum is currently located aboard the USS Yorktown in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
New York City, San Diego and Washington, D.C. were among the finalists before the foundation earlier this month narrowed it to Denver and Arlington.
The museum honors more than 3,500 recipients of the nation's highest award for valor.
The Medal of Honor, the nation's highest and most prestigious military honor, has been awarded to more than 3,500 military service members since the first medal was presented in 1863. The National Medal of Honor Museum will offer an experience that draws personal and emotional connections to Medal of Honor recipients and their inspiring stories, while shedding light on the wars in which they fought and the ideals that the Medal of Honor represents.
The museum also announced that it will work with Congress to create the first-ever monument in Washington, D.C., dedicated to honoring the more than 3,500 Medal of Honor recipients. The Congressional Medal of Honor Memorial will join other national landmarks in the country's capital, and draw a maximum level of visibility and support from every corner of the United States.
"The National Medal of Honor Museum is the caretaker of a legacy defined by sacrifice," said Medal of Honor recipient Master Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Britt Slabinski. "The service and patriotism of my fellow Medal of Honor recipients and those we served with should be told on a national stage. The National Medal of Honor museum will protect and project that legacy by building a museum in America's heartland, Denver or Arlington, and a Medal of Honor monument on the national mall in our nation's capital. This will create additional opportunities for millions of visitors to experience and learn those stories."
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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