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NC man getting Purple Heart back, 70 years later

By Associated Press
Published On: Jan 19 2013 08:44:04 PM CST
0922 Purple Heart

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RALEIGH -

A North Carolina man is getting his Purple Heart back, almost 70 years after he mailed it home and never saw it again.
    
Ninety-year-old George Hemphill will receive his Purple Heart medal in a ceremony Sunday in Rutherfordton. Hemphill got the award for his fighting in 1944 during World War II in France.
    
He mailed it home and never asked about it again.
    
A man bought Hemphill's Purple Heart in October 2000 in an antique store in Columbia, S.C. He held on to it until a friend put him in touch with Purple Hearts Reunited, which is run by a Vermont man who found Hemphill and his daughter in Union Mills, N.C.
    
Hemphill says he's flabbergasted that so many people went to so much trouble to return a Purple Heart that he didn't even know was missing.