The Congressional Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor given to our military men and women.
This September Knoxville will host the nearly 80 living recipients and families at their annual convention.
When quilter Kit Brown heard the convention was coming to town almost two years ago, she had an idea.
"I know a lot of people who like to do quilts for soldiers maybe we could make them a quilt," Brown said.
Since then, she has recruited volunteers to hand make each living Medal of Honor recipient a personal quilt. Dozens of volunteers have spent countless hours sewing for each hero.
With Sgt. Kyle White, Sgt. Jesus Duran, and Private First Class Gary Wetzel's photos hung over her sewing machine, quilter Kathleen Vanorsdel finishes up a patriotic quilt.
White was just awarded the medal in March for his bravery. Even though Vanorsdel had already done two quilts, she jumped on the opportunity to do another.
"I think about them when I'm sewing," Vanorsdel said.
Just Tuesday it was announced Marine Lance Cpl. William "Kyle" Carpenter will receive a Medal of Honor in June.
"This quilt to me seemed to be just the perfect thing for him," Brown said of an extra quilt a volunteer donated.
"When you look at the white space a little closer you see it's made of lots of jagged little pieces. This young man [Carpenter] threw himself on a grenade to save his buddies and suffered a significant amount of damage including a lot of facial damage to me it just says you know what it may be made of pieces but it's still a beautiful thing," Brown said.
Each quilter chose a troop to make a quilt for based on a connection they found and explained why in a letter that will be accompanied with each gift.
"My husband and I are both veterans of the Vietnam era," Vanorsdel said, "For many years as well we felt like second class citizens. So I always wanted to do something for another veteran so that individual didn't have those types of feelings."
These quilters hope their heroes will feel how much they're appreciated every time they see their quilts.
"As I sewed I thought of your hero and said many prayers of thanks that he was willing to go that extra mile for me and all Americans during his time in the service," Vanorsdel wrote to Sgt. Duran's family.
Each quilter will be able to personally present their quilt to their Medal of Honor recipient at the convention in September.
You can see a sample of the quilts on display this weekend at the 34th Annual Smoky Mountain Quilters Show. It takes place May 23-25 at the Cooper Athletic Center in Maryville College.