On December 14, President Obama signed into law Senate Bill No. 1555 (S.1555), the "Filipino Veterans of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2015," which provides for the award of a single Congressional gold medal of appropriate design on behalf of the Congress, to the Filipino Veterans of World War II in recognition of the dedicated service of the veterans during World War II. S. 1555 passed the US Congress unanimously after the House of Representatives approved it on 30 November 2016.
The Senate version (S.1555) was sponsored by Senators Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Dean Heller (R-NV), Harry Reid (D-NV), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Brian Schatz (D-HI). The House version (H.R.2737) was sponsored by Representatives Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Joseph Heck (R-NV), Juan Vargas (D-CA), Mike Thompson (D-CA), Mark Takai (D-HI), and Jackie Speier (D-CA). Both bills were introduced on 11 June 2015.
The Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C. is pleased that President Obama has recognized the service of the Filipino Veterans of World War II.
“We welcome this terrific news and extend our appreciation anew to all the advocates and supporters of the bill at the US House of Representatives and the Senate. This gold medal is a fitting tribute to our veterans’ sacrifice, courage, and strength. From ordinary civilians to defenders of free nations, these men and women deserve our deepest respect and gratitude,” said Minister Patrick Chuasoto, Chargé d’Affaires ad interim of the Philippine Embassy, in a statement.
“This could not have been done without the commitment and support of the Philippine Consulates General and Filipino communities across the United States, the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA), and the Filipino Veterans Recognition and Education Project (FILVETREP) in the success of this joint campaign. We look forward to having our veterans seeing the actual gold medal as soon as it is minted,” Minister Chuasoto added.
The Filipino Veterans of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2015 will award a Congressional Gold Medal, the highest expression of national appreciation for distinguished achievements and contributions in the United States, collectively, to 260,000 Filipino veterans in recognition of their dedicated service during World War II.
Public Diplomacy Section, EMBASSY OF THE PHILIPPINES, Washington, D.C.