The third Monday in October is observed as National Heroes Day in Jamaica since 1968 when the British honours were replaced by a system o national honours and awards.
The system of Honours and Awards Consisting of five Orders as well as the Medal of Honour and the Badge of Honour, the system of Honours and Awards are as follows:
The Order of National Hero
The Order of the Nation
The Order of Merit
The Order of Jamaica
The Order of Distinction (Commander and Officer ranks)
In 1968, the Select Committees of the House of Representatives and the Senate, under the Chairmanship of the then Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Hugh Shearer, prepared and finalised the criteria for all the above awards with the exception of the Order of the Nation, which was created in 1973 for Governors-General.
The Order of National Hero - "Rt. Excellent")
The Order of National Hero is awarded for services of the most distinguished nature rendered by Jamaican citizens to Jamaica. This honour is awarded either on the retirement of the recipient from active public life or posthumously.
Marcus Garvey was the first hero to be honoured. Seven others are; Sir Alexander Bustamante, Norman Washington Manley, Paul Bogle, George William Gordon, Sam Sharpe and Nanny of the Maroons.
In Kingston’s National Heroes Park today the holiday celebrations culminate as the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) throws a ‘Salute to the Heroes’ event, where floral tributes will be laid in their honour followed by a tribute concert. Artists slated to appear include; Tarrus Riley, Dean Fraser, The Tivoli Dance Troupe, The National Festival Orchestra and Choir and more.
Admission is free.