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Medal of Honor

Tampa is hosting the annual Medal of Honor convention this week, with festivities kicking off Tuesday.

It brings together 46 of the 70 living recipients of the nation’s highest military honor, given to those who risked their lives during service.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

Living Medal of Honor recipients are somewhat rare. There are only 79 living out of nearly 3,500 recipients since the highest military honor was created during the Civil War.

So, it was no surprise that 200 students, veterans and members of the public came out to hear Medal of Honor recipient Master Sergeant (Ret.) Leroy Petry deliver the keynote address at the University of South Florida Veterans Day Ceremony in Tampa.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

A World War II veteran of Iwo Jima and recipient of the Medal of Honor is counting on hundreds of teenage boys at a Tampa public school to honor his dream.

Marine Corporal Hershel “Woody” Williams’ vision is to build a memorial in every state honoring Gold Star families, the spouses, parents, children and extended family members of military men and women who have been killed in combat.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

Special Forces are considered the military’s elite - the Rangers, Green Berets, and Navy SEALS among others.  And the elite of the elite are the Special Forces who have been awarded the Medal of Honor.

Two of them were recognized this week and their names added to the Special Operations Memorial Wall of Honor at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.

Sergeant First Class Leroy Petry, an Army Ranger, watched as his name was unveiled. It is one of 45 names etched into the black granite tiles.

U.S. Army

Florida Gov. Rick Scott today, Dec. 12, 2012, will honor the Oviedo family of Green Beret Staff Sgt. Robert Miller. His name will be included in Florida's Wall of Honor in Tallahassee.

The Special Forces soldier was killed during a battle in Afghanistan in January 2008. Miller was awarded the Medal of Honor in 2010 for his heroism and valor during that combat.