Each banquet has its own special tributes and sense of honor; however, all dinners follow a similar agenda.
A typical dinner includes:
The purpose of the Dinner is to honor those who have shed their blood for our Country. As a result, we do not ask them to speak - simply relax and enjoy being in the presence of their Purple Heart peers, family, friends, and the community-at-large.
Founded in 2010, the State Purple Heart Foundation honored local men and women who fought in all U.S. military conflicts and were bestowed with the Purple Heart medal. The State Purple Heart Foundation ultimately became the nonprofit known today as The Purple Heart Foundation of North Carolina. The Purple Heart Foundation of NC is an all-volunteer organization established to organize appreciation banquets throughout North Carolina. These dinners are held every year during the month of August as National Purple Heart Day takes place on August 7th.
As the success and popularity of these dinners grew, other cities in North Carolina wanted to participate. The most recent city to begin hosting annual Purple Heart Dinners is Fayetteville. Known as the Sandhills Purple Heart Dinner, Fayetteville has successfully hosted two of the largest dinners to date in both 2017 & 2018. This new city averages honoring 142 Purple Heart recipients. In 2018, they honored our heroes in a sold out venue.
These impressive dinners are free for Purple Heart recipients and their families. We also honor and provide complimentary tickets to Gold Star Mothers and a direct family member of an individual killed in action. However, all are encouraged to buy tickets as the dinners are open to the public! The Foundation wishes to encourage the public to get involved and attend in a show of appreciation by enjoying dinner, a speaker, and fellowship in meeting our local heroes.
George Aux - Purple Heart recipient (US Army Col. – retired)
Cara Coleman - Insurance Agent
William Ebersbach - MOPH Commander - State of NC
Jon Evans - News Anchor WECT-TV (Wilmington)
Kathleen Fairall - Former US Army Captain, Business Owner
Bill Graham - Chair - Goldsboro Purple Heart Foundation, (US Navy Seabee Veteran)
Malcolm Harris – Attorney
Sonya Hemingway - Business Consultant - Charlotte, NC
Michael Johnson – Board Chair, Army Veteran, Business Owner
Lenny Lazzara - Region IV - MOPH Commander (7 states and Puerto Rico)
Ed McMahon - Sheriff, New Hanover County
Ryan Nemitz – CPA
Jesse Torres - State Office - Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH)