MARAD Honors America’s World War II Merchant Mariners, Releases Information For Veterans Obtaining Duplicate Congressional Gold Medals
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) announced eligibility criteria for duplicates of the Congressional Gold Medal awarded to World War II Merchant Mariners. Eligible World War II Merchant Mariners, or their surviving next of kin, will now be able to request duplicate medals from MARAD.
The Congressional Gold Medal, which is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. Congress, honors those whose dedication, heroism, and public service have created a lasting impact on American history. On March 14, 2020, legislation was signed into law authorizing the Congressional Gold Medal for American Merchant Mariners whose honorable deeds played a critical role in World War II.
The United States Mint in consultation with maritime partners, designed the Congressional Gold Medal in honor of World War II merchant mariner veterans.
The original medal was presented by the Speaker of the House of Representatives during a ceremony convened in Statuary Hall by Congressional leaders on May 18, 2022, and it will be displayed in the American Merchant Marine Museum in New York.
The Merchant Mariners of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2020 authorizes MARAD to award duplicates of the medal to individuals who, between December 7, 1941, and December 31, 1946, were members of the United States Merchant Marine, or other related services. If a qualified individual has passed, MARAD is authorized to issue medals to the next of kin.
To request a duplicate medal, veterans or their family members or survivors can submit:
- A copy of the Merchant Mariner’s DD Form 214, “Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active duty” with continuation ship if provided (the DD Form 214 is required to verify Merchant Marine service on vessels during World War II);
- A summary, if available, of World War II sailing history to include the theater(s) of operation and ports of discharge; and
- Book number or United States Maritime Service (USMS) number if available.
Inquiries, along with the required documents, can be emailed to Katrina McRae, Maritime Awards Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For additional information on the creation of the Merchant Mariners of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2020, please visit here.
For remarks given by Deputy Administrator Lucinda Lessley on behalf of MARAD to the attending mariners and families in celebration of the awarding of the Merchant Mariners of World War II Congressional Gold Medal, visit here.
For additional Mariner Awards, Flags, and Medal information, visit here.