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Veterans arrive for Medal of Honor Day wreath-laying

Friday - 3/23/2012, 11:12am  ET

airport
Medal of Honor recipients arrive at Reagan National Airport. (WTOP/Andrew Mollenbeck)

WASHINGTON - Sixteen Medal of Honor recipients arrived at Reagan National Airport Friday to take part in the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

The veterans will go to the Tomb of the Unknowns to lay the wreaths as part of a National Medal of Honor Day tradition. National Medal of Honor Day is March 25.

The 16 veterans were met with applause from friends, family members and airport staff.

Joe Marm, the 7th Medal of Honor recipient from Vietnam, described the other men as gracious, fine and humble. His sons were among those to greet the group at the airport.

"When they wear that medal they wear it not for themselves but to honor the sacrifice of those who didn't come back," says Jim Palmersheim, director of Veterans Initiatives at American Airlines. "You just see all of them there and you understand collectively what that price of freedom is really all about."

The wreath-laying ceremony will take place Friday at 2:15 p.m. with a special guided tour Sunday at 10 a.m. A full schedule of events is available at arlingtoncemetery.mil.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)