The Purple Heart is the oldest military award still given to members of the United States military. It has a history that traces back to the waning days of the American Revolution, and was created by George Washington. It embodies the enormous sacrifices veterans make to keep us safe, being awarded to those who have been wounded or killed on the battlefield.
However, sometimes veterans have had their medals misplaced, lost, or stolen. Fortunately, the nonprofit organization Purple Hearts Reunited is there for those veterans and their families. Since 2012, they have scoured through hundreds of records to locate veterans, and have returned more than 350 Purple Heart medals.
On August 7-- which was Purple Heart Day-- the organization conducted a “Return Ceremony” to reunite eight medals from World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam and Iraq. Some of the men returned home safe. Some never came home, but their heroic actions live on in their Purple Hearts and the hearts of their families.
Zachariah Fike, founder of Purple Hearts Reunited, told FOX 5 New York, "For a lot of those families this was the last tangible item they've ever received -- the last thing they can touch, they can feel. That memory of that loved one that didn't come home."
Watch the video to see the heroes’ medals returned to their rightful place.