Code Talkers Recognition Congressional Medals Program: Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe (South Dakota)
The Code Talkers Recognition Act of 2008 requires the Secretary of the Treasury to strike Congressional Medals in recognition of the dedication and valor of Native American code talkers to the U.S. Armed Services during World War I and World War II. “Code talkers” refers to those Native Americans who used their tribal languages as a means of secret communication during wartime.
Under the Act, unique gold medals are struck for each Native American tribe that had a member who served as a code talker. Silver duplicate medals are presented to the specific code talkers, their next of kin, or other personal representatives. In addition, bronze duplicates are available for sale to the public.
The Navajo Nation was awarded Congressional Gold Medals in 2001 under Public Law 106-554.
The obverse design depicts a World War I soldier sitting in a trench while receiving a message over his telephone. In the lower field, two World War II soldiers sit in a deciduous forest while communicating messages.
The reverse design features elements from the Cheyenne River Sioux flag and four tipis with buffalos imposed on them.
- WAKPA WASTE OYANKE AKICITA ZUYA IYASICA (Cheyenne River Sioux language for “good river soldiers fight the enemy.”)
- LAKOTA CODE TALKERS
- WORLD WAR I
- WORLD WAR II
- ACT OF CONGRESS
Mint and Mint Mark
- Sculptor: Jim Licaretz, Sculptor-engraver
- Designer: Don Everhart, Sculptor-engraver