As a staunch supporter and close associate of the Armed Forces of the United States for the past 30 years, Bob Hope has given freely of his time and talents to raise the morale and warm the hearts of two generations of American servicemen. During World War II and the Korean War he traveled more than one million miles to entertain over five million members of the Armed Forces. Since 1954, his Christmas tours of installations in critical areas overseas—the last four in Southeast Asia—have been an eagerly awaited event for soldiers away from home. Employing his own outstanding talents as a humorist and gifted commentator on current trends at home and accompanied by a troupe of fellow performers, he continues to travel around the world to entertain the sons of the fathers he performed for in World War II.
Through his long career in the field of entertainment, Mr. Hope has gained universal respect and admiration as a talented performer who has contributed his utmost in service to his country and to his fellow citizens. He has been widely recognized and acclaimed for his loyalty and generosity as well as for his professional mastery. He is well known for his philanthropies. He is an untiring supporter of such worthy causes as homes for the aged, college scholarship funds, music and art centers, hospitals and many foundations dedicated to medical research and rehabilitation.
In further recognition of Bob Hope’s numerous and diversified humanitarian and philanthropic endeavors and of his unselfish giving of himself and his professional talents to American servicemen during long, critical years of crisis and peak mobilization, the Association of Graduates of the United States Military Academy hereby awards him the Sylvanus Thayer Medal. Read his speech.