As a result of their heroic efforts, many Homing Pigeons received medals and honors. One United States Homing Pigeon, called "G.I. Joe," was awarded the Dicken Medal for bravery by the Lord Mayor of London for saving over 100 British soldiers in World War II. "G.I. Joe" is the only bird or animal in the United States to be given this high award.
The racing of Homing Pigeons is made possible by its uncanny ability to find home and by its desire to return to its home as quickly as possible over unfamiliar territory hundreds of miles away. This fantastic ability to "home" in all types of weather conditions is the subject of considerable research. In an age, however, when we have the technological and scientific capability to put men on the moon, we still have been unable to totally unlock the mystery of the homing mechanism.
The American Racing Pigeon Union conducted extensive testing to ensure that the transport of Homing Pigeons did not cause harm to the birds. The hearty Racing Homer is an athlete of great strength and endurance.