Killeen may soon become the second city in Bell County, and fifth in the state, to bear the Purple Heart City designation.

Harker Heights was the first in the county. Earl Williams, commander of Chapter 1876 Military Order of the Purple Heart, and his wife, Doris Williams, president of the ladies auxiliary, presented the Killeen City Council with the opportunity to bear the nationally recognizable designation at a workshop meeting Tuesday.

Purple Heart cities are known for their dedication to veterans, and the designation pays tribute to servicemen and women who have received the honor.

“The Purple Heart (medal) is one of the most widely recognized of all military medals,” Earl Williams said. “It can be earned by any member of the service regardless of branch or occupational specialty. It is wanted by few, but earned by many.”

There are 281 Purple Heart cities in the United States; Texas is home to four: Harker Heights, Georgetown, Kerrville and Lubbock.

Kerr County is the only county in the state to bear the designation.

Doris Williams said Killeen was chosen to bear the designation because of its “rich heritage (in) supporting the military.”

“I don’t see why you shouldn’t have the Purple Heart City (designation) in Killeen,” she said.

“It doesn’t cost anything, (and) the symbol lets service members and their family members know that (the city) supports them.”

The council agreed to move forward with getting the item put on an upcoming agenda. | 254-501-7555

Contact Natalie Stewart at or 254-501-7555

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