Twenty one United States Medal of Honor winners are in the Cooke County community for a yearly festival in their honor.
The veterans were escorted into town Wednesday by hundreds of motorcyclists and police officers from across the Metroplex.
They will participate in a number of events over the weekend including banquets, meeting with local school children, a parade Saturday and the dedication of plaques and freshly planted trees in each of their names.
The group of the military’s highest award recipients is made up of veterans from the Vietnam War to the most recent conflict in Afghanistan; though the town has played host to veterans from World War II and Korea in past years. Currently, only 77 Medal of Honor winners are still alive.
Gainesville residents decided to become a Medal of Honor Host City in 2001 and since then have opened their doors to recipients yearly for a weekend of events and small-town hospitality.
In 2012, Rand McNally and USA Today actually named the community “Most Patriotic Small Town in America” for their efforts.