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Congressional Gold Medal

Wednesday, March 10, 2010, roughly 300 former Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) attended a ceremony on Capitol Hill to receive the Congressional Gold Medal for service to their country during World War II. The first minted medal was printed in gold and awarded ceremoniously. It will find its home at the Smithsonian. Surviving members received individual replicas of the medal, made of bronze. More than 60 years since they served their country as the first women trained to fly United States military aircraft, some 800 medals had to be awarded posthumously to surviving family members.

The total number of medals awarded was 1,114, representing 1,102 WASP, plus 11 who died in training. One more medal was awarded to Jacqueline Cochran, founder of the WASP, and now deceased. The medal is awarded by Congress and is the highest honor a civilian may receive, along with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

By Glenn Pew, Contributing Editor, Video Editor, AV Web World's Premier Independent Aviation News Resource

US Mint - 3 Inch Medal