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McCaskill Secures Purple Heart Award for St. Peters Veteran - KOAM TV 7

McCaskill Secures Purple Heart Award for St. Peters Veteran

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NEWS RELEASE ISSUED BY THE OFFICE OF U.S. SENATOR CLAIRE MCCASKILL

McCaskill Secures Purple Heart Award for St. Peters Veteran

Vietnam War veteran’s family requested assistance from Senator in receiving Purple Heart award for action in 1969 patrol

WASHINGTON – Nearly a half-century after being wounded in action during the Vietnam War, Missouri veteran Walter Sitzwohl has finally received the Purple Heart he earned, thanks to the help of U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill.

“We are privileged to live side-by-side with heroes like Walter Sitzwohl,” said McCaskill, a seniormember of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “He joins a long list of courageous Missourians who have put their lives on the line and were wounded in their service to defend the freedoms Americans enjoy today. This long-overdue award properly honors the remarkable sacrifices Walter made many years ago.”

The 65 year-old Sitzwohl enlisted in the United States Army in January 1968, taking his basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood in Missouri, and Advanced Individual Training at Ft. Rucker in Alabama. He was assigned to A Company, 158th Assault Helicopter Battalion (AHB). He deployed to Vietnam with this unit, but was transferred to D Company, 101st AHB in March 1969, based out of Phu Bai, Vietnam. On April 10, 1969, Mr. Sitzwohl was wounded while on patrol following enemy contact the night before. At the end of 1969, he was transferred to C Company, 101st AHB as a Huey crew chief. He served a total of 21 months, 19 days, in the Republic of Vietnam.

Sitzwohl’s wife, Tomme Sitzwohl, made contact with McCaskill in July regarding her husband’s Purple Heart. McCaskill’s office opened a case on Sitzwohl’s behalf. At the request of McCaskill’s office, the Army reviewed its records and determined that Sitzwohl should have been awarded the Purple Heart medal for the combat wounds he sustained while serving in Vietnam. McCaskill arranged a formal award ceremony for Sitzwohl, where he receive his long overdue Purple Heart in St. Peters.

The Purple Heart is a military decoration awarded to members of the U.S. Armed Forces who have been wounded or killed in combat.

Read more about McCaskill’s work for veterans HERE

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