VALOR GUARD DIRECTOR
LTC Mitchell “Taco” Bell – Dallas, TX
LtCol Mitch “Taco” Bell joined the Marine Corps in 1986 and was winged a Naval Aviator in January of 1991. He flew the KC-130 in Cherry Point, NC, Okinawa Japan and Fort Worth TX in the Reserves. His primary duty has been Recruiting for nine of his 29 years in the Marine Corps.
In 1998, he left active duty, was hired by American Airlines, and currently flies the Boeing 787 around the world. As a reservist, he ran an old Mig Base in TQ Iraq from 2005 to 2006 and worked with the Afghan Police for 8 months in 2008 and again for a short tour in 2009 with Prison Corrections over in Afghanistan.
Bell currently assists with numerous charities and Veterans organizations in the DFW area. He directs Purple Hearts Reunited’s Valor Guard, a return team dedicated to delivering lost medals of valor across the country.
PUBLIC AFFAIRS DIRECTOR
John E. Bircher III – Lady Lake, FL
Patriot Bircher had a distinguished, 30-year military career. He joined the U.S. Army in 1959 as an enlisted man and retired in 1988 as a Colonel. Although a Military Intelligence Officer and Middle East Foreign Area Specialist for most of his career, he served in Vietnam with Special Forces in 1969-1970 where he was awarded the Purple Heart. Among his many CONUS and overseas assignments, he served as a Military Attaché in Iran, Lebanon and Morocco and speaks both Arabic and French fluently. His last military assignment was at the U.S. Department of State where, as an exchange officer, he was the Director of Regional Affairs and Politico-Military Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for the Near East. He is a graduate of the National War College and holds a Masters Degree in International Relations.
For his valor and military service, Patriot Bircher was awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Legion of Merit, Soldier’s Medal, Bronze Star Medal with “V” device and Oak Leaf Cluster, Purple Heart, and the Specials Forces Badge.
Patriot Bircher currently serves as the National Director of Public Relations for the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Patriot Bircher and his wife Carol reside in Lady Lake, Florida.