Archived Outdoors

Cades Cove hosts Medal of Honor recipients

Nearly half of the 65 living Medal of Honor recipients and their families traveled to Knoxville last week for the Medal of Honor Celebration, with a delegation of 60 people embarking on a guided tour of Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Thursday, Sept. 8. 

“Today we facilitated a very special opportunity to honor these American heroes for their service to our country,” said Superintendent Cassius Cash. “In Cades Cove, they were able to experience the gift of rest and renewal that a visit to the Smokies provides to millions of visitors each year.” 

Park staff and volunteers with previous military service greeted the group at Cades Cove Visitor Center, and participants had the chance to enjoy traditional music, demonstrations and exploration of the grist mill, cantilever barn and other historic structures. Vietnam veteran employees were also presented with commemorative lapel pins to honor their service. 

Participants explored the Primitive Baptist Church and cemetery where 16 veteran graves were marked with American flags and visited the Pearl Harbor tree planted on Dec. 7, 1941, by Cades Cove resident Golman Myers to commemorate the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Bernard Myers, Golman’s youngest son, was four years old when the tree was planted and was there to share the memory with attendees.  

The weeklong celebration in Knoxville focused on reuniting recipients of the United States’ highest military award for valor. To accommodate the Cades Cove visit, Cades Cove Loop Road was temporarily closed to the public. 

Leave a comment

Smokey Mountain News Logo
Go to top
Payment Information


At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.