July 31, 2014
Dozens of soldiers wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan have been honored during a ceremony commemorating the 225th anniversary of the creation of the Purple Heart Award.
Former Gov. Pete Wilson presided over Saturday's ceremonies at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library near Simi Valley.
Organized by military support group Yellow Ribbon America, the reception paid tribute to recent recipients of the Purple Heart, given to those wounded in combat.
Those including Sgt. Maj. Jesse Acosta and Army Staff Sgt. Jarod Behee.
Fifty-year-old Acosta was hit by shrapnel from a mortar shell during a morning run at his Baghdad base in January 2006.
He lost both eyes, his top teeth and his senses of smell and taste.
Twenty-eight-year-old Behee has a pink scar creasing his shaved head from a sniper's bullet that almost killed him in Iraq in 2005.