"Although the presentation of the Purple Heart to Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Smith’s family will take place in a private ceremony on January 14, 2016, the U.S. Navy would like to thank the people of this community for their support of Petty Officer Smith and their continued support of the U.S. Navy.
Both before and after the attack on the Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC)Chattanooga, the people of Chattanooga, southeast Tennessee and north Georgia have demonstrated a commitment and devotion to our sailors that is both extraordinary and very much appreciated. The support of this community, in fact, can be credited with helping make the awarding of the Purple Heart possible.
Our gratitude to the people of this community is as undying as our devotion to defending this great nation. We look forward to continuing our unique relationship and winning our shared mission."
PREVIOUS STORY: The Purple Heart award ceremony for Randall Smith, the Navy sailor killed in the July 16th attacks will not be open to the public.
According to the Navy Personnel Public Affairs Office, the family has requested it be kept private.
For that reason, the Navy will not be releasing information on when and where it will happen.