Coins honoring World War II generation to benefit National WWII Memorial unveiled

Commemorative coins honoring the Greatest Generation were unveiled during a ceremony at the National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 21. Sales of the coins will benefit the memorial. Photo credit Friends of the National World War II Memorial

New commemorative coins that will benefit the National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. were unveiled during a ceremony on Wednesday.

Friends of the National World War II Memorial joined together to hold the coin unveiling ceremony.

With designs showcasing the Memorial’s Wall of Stars and a reimagining of the figure of Liberation from the World War II Victory Medal, the commemorative coins will serve as an important representation of the spirit, sacrifice, and commitment of the Americans who fought to defend the nation and advance peace and freedom throughout the world, said Friends of the National World War II Memorial chair Jane Droppa.

“We pay tribute to those veterans such as Bob Dole who was instrumental in the original fundraising for the memorial,” she said. “Now, it is our time and turn to ensure this national treasure does not fall into disrepair.”

Sales of the three-coin set include surcharges - $35 for each $5 gold coin sold; $10 for each silver dollar sold; and $5 for each half dollar sold - authorized to support maintenance and repairs of the memorial, as well as for commemorative and educational programming.

“The Greatest Generation commemorative coin designs are emblematic of the National World War II Memorial and the service and sacrifice of American soldiers and civilians during World War II,” said United States Mint Director Ventris C. Gibson.

Bipartisan legislation authorizing the minting of the coins was introduced by Reps. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) and Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) in the House of Representatives and by Sens. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.). President Joe Biden signed the measure into law in September of 2022.

“The Greatest Generation commemorative coin honors the Memorial, which stands as an important symbol of America’s national unity, a timeless reminder of the moral strength and power that flows when free people are at once united and bonded together in a common and just cause for liberty,” said Kaptur. “As Americans — as a free people — let us unite to revere, to remember, and to pay tribute to the millions of our fellow citizens who have made the ultimate sacrifice for an ideal... the ideal of liberty for all people...for all of us...and our progeny.”

U.S. Army and Air Force World War II veteran Harry Miller, who lives in the District of Columbia, said he is fortunate to be able to visit the memorial as often as he can.

“The memorial has started to show its age and I’m proud that Congress authorized the legislation of the commemorative coins to ensure this beautiful tribute to my generation will live on in perpetuity.”

The memorial was dedicated on May 29, 2004 – the culmination of a 17-year effort, led in Congress by Kaptur. It honors the 16 million who served in the armed forces of the United during World War II, the more than 400,000 who died, and the millions who supported the war at home.

To receive email updates on presales and other timely information on the coins, visit here.

The coins are expected to be on sale in early 2024.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Friends of the National World War II Memorial