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Senate Clears Bill Cosponsored by Shaheen & Hassan to Award Congressional Gold Medal to WWII U.S. Merchant Marines

(Washington, DC) – Bipartisan legislation backed by Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) to award the Congressional Gold Medal to the U.S. Merchant Mariners of World War II unanimously passed the Senate last night. The Merchant Mariners of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act recognizes the dedicated and vital service of the 290,000 men who served in the Merchant Marine and risked their lives transporting American soldiers, supplies and equipment over the seas in support of the Allied war effort. Their efforts were critical to securing the ultimate success of the Allies in World War II. 

“During the Second World War, American merchant marines served as the supply line for U.S. troops and our Allies, and were instrumental to the war effort,” said Senator Shaheen. “Without their immense efforts and sacrifices, victory would not have been possible. This bipartisan bill awards the highest honor Congress can bestow on these extraordinary men, who are so deserving of this recognition. We will never fully repay the debt we owe them for their service.” 

“The Merchant Marines played a crucial role in the Allied victory in World War II by ensuring that our nation’s troops got where they needed to go and were properly supplied on the front lines,” Senator Hassan said. “For their heroic efforts, I am pleased that the Senate passed this bipartisan bill to grant merchant mariners a long-overdue Congressional Gold Medal to properly commemorate their brave sacrifice.”

Text of the legislation is available here.