America’s Freedom Bell was unveiled Wednesday, May 8, at its new home, San Diego’s Veterans Museum in Balboa Park. Created to allow every American the opportunity to ring the bell to honor those who have served our nation, it has since traveled widely to Independence Hall, Arlington Cemetery, Pearl Harbor, Normandy Beach, and many other sites on national holidays and historically significant dates, but San Diego will be its first permanent home. Since its inception, over 5 million Americans have rung it to honor a family member or friend since it was cast in 2013.
With personal messages read from President Trump, Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan and others, the bell was rung proudly by San Diego Medal of Honor winners Robert Madrzejewski and Jay Vargas, as well as veterans from all military conflicts including WWII, the Korean War, Vietnam War, Desert Storm and the Afghanistan/Iraq War. San Diegans are welcome to visit the bell at the museum and ring it in honor of a friend or loved one that has served in the U.S. armed forces. Esteemed guests included San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer; President of the Veterans Museum Jack Harkins; and Richard Rovsek, founder of the Spirit of Liberty Foundation, who created the bell.