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The Honor Bell

Honor Bells Are Tuned To Mourning

Bells have long been utilized to announce deaths or convey the solemnity of a passing. Honor bells are finely tuned to reflect mourning, struck note by note to express profound sorrow and acknowledge the depth of loss.

An honor bell is unparalleled in its ability to sound a tribute. Its dignity perfectly aligns with the traditions and simplicity of military funeral rites, while its beauty adds a touch of reverence.

Purpose Of Honor Bell

The Honor Bell stands as the first tolling bell ever cast in U.S. history specifically crafted to pay a final honor to United States Service Members killed in action and Armed Forces Veterans. Solely veterans and active-duty service members toll this custom-designed, one-thousand-pound stationary bronze bell, measuring thirty-seven inches in diameter and forty inches in height.

Its motto, “Forged From Honor,” epitomizes its significance. During the casting process, artifacts from twelve deceased Colorado servicemembers spanning from World War II to the Global War on Terror were infused into the molten bronze. These artifacts symbolize veterans of the past, present, and future, forever ingrained in the bell, solidifying its identity as “Forged From Honor.”

Transportation Of The Artifacts

The artifacts were transported in May 2016 from Denver, Colorado to Cincinnati, Ohio, escorted by state chapters of the Patriot Guard Riders and other veteran service organizations.  Upon reaching the border of each state, there was a transfer ceremony, passing on and entrusting the artifacts to the next state’s group of riders. The Honor Bell was cast especially for the Foundation by The Verdin Company of Ohio. The Honor Bell was cast slightly thicker than required, and was gradually and carefully tuned. Tuning involves a painstaking process of removing just the right amount of metal at different levels inside the bell — thus ensuring the instrument sounds the somber notes required of an honor bell.

Bell's Journey Back To Colorado

Following the casting and mounting of the bell onto its vehicle, the members of the Honor Bell Foundation and the Bell Honor Guard accompanied it back to Colorado. They showcased this symbol of tradition and respect at different locations. The dedication of the Honor Bell took place during a Memorial Day ceremony in 2016. Currently, it tolls at funerals and memorials in Fort Logan National Cemetery and throughout Colorado. These Bell Honors, offered free of charge to veterans’ families, are made possible by the generosity of our donors.