Purple Heart Returned to WWII Vet after 70 Years

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A war veteran and his Purple Heart have been reunited after almost 70 years.

Ninety-year-old George Hemphill received the medal in Europe in World War II.  Since he was still recovering in a French hospital, Hemphill mailed his medal home, not thinking anything more about it until now.

Years later, a stranger found and bought the pin at an antique store.

"It didn't belong there," said Michael Blum, who found the Purple Heart medal. "So I said, I'll make an investment and see if I can find the owner. And when I looked at it, I really got it because it had a name on it."

It turns out the medal had gotten lost in the mail and never made it to Hemphill's family all those years ago.

The antique buyer worked with the organization Purple Hearts Reunited to find Hemphill and honor him again for his sacrifice nearly 70 years later.

"Returning these medals brings closure to the families. I absolutely love doing it," Capt. Zachariah Fike, who runs Purple Hearts Reunited, said.

"I've spent quite a bit of money on this project. I would do it 10 times over because it's the right thing to do," he said.

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