Contributed by: Don WinnerYesterday afternoon the Roosevelt Medal Descendants organization held their annual ceremony to recognize and preserve the memory of the American citizens who were engaged in the construction of the Panama Canal, and who, for their noble effort, were awarded the Roosevelt Medal by the President of the United States. The group is legally constituted in Panama as a not-for-profit organization. Their purpose is to establish an association of descendants of Roosevelt Medal recipients to promote civic and cultural activities designed to honor the contribution of their forebears in the construction of the Panama Canal, to encourage research and investigation related to the role of Roosevelt Medal recipients in the creation of the Panama Canal, and to disseminate information and conduct public ceremonies to ensure that the historic achievement of Roosevelt Medal recipients is not forgotten. The group assembles on or about August 15 every year to pay tribute to United States citizens employed in the building of the Canal. All direct descendants of Roosevelt Medal recipients are eligible to apply for membership.
Mostly Grandchildren Now: The last Roosevelt Medal was awarded in 1914. Most of the descendants in attendance at the ceremony were the grandchildren of the original builders of the Panama Canal.
Assn. President Marc Quinn presides over the ceremony in the new area of the Panama Canal Museum dedicated to the American builders of the Panama Canal and recipients of the Roosevelt Medal. Marc and his brother Bruce Quinn are the grandsons of Roosevelt Medal holder Patrick J. Quinn.
Berta Ramona Thayer reads a passage in Spanish about the historical significance of the Roosevelt Medal. Looking over her shoulder is a bronze bust of President Theodore Roosevelt that was presented to the Panama Canal Museum by Hillary Clinton.
Fred Sill reads the English version of the same passage to the assembled participants.
Executive Director and Chief Curator of the Panama Canal Museum Dr. Angeles Ramos Baquero explains future plans for a computerized system documenting the lives and history of the Roosevelt Medal recipients that will be installed in the museum.
Kevin Bradley, Lucile Robison, and Jose Thrower listen to the presentations.
Lucile Robison, daughter of Roosevelt Medal recipient George Tarflinger, wearing her father's medal.
A Closeup (actually, a zoom-in) on the medal Lucile Robison was wearing.
The Roosevelt Medal that's on display in the museum.
Annual Gathering in front of the new exhibit dedicated to the recipients of the Roosevelt Medal in the Canal Museum, descendants of the original "expats" to Panama.
International Insurance Guru Kevin Bradley (first finger to the left) points to the name of of his grandfather, James E. Bradley, that appears on the list of Roosevelt Medal recipients in the Panama Canal Museum.
Kevin Bradley next to the list of medal holders.
A Bust of Theodore Roosevelt, presented by Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Kevin Bradley, Luis Arreaga, the Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in Panama, museum curator Dr. Angeles Ramos Baquero, and Bruce Quinn, widely recognized as the best director and producer of live theater in Panama.