Wednesday, August 7 marks National Purple Heart Day - a day to honor men and women wounded or killed in military combat.
George Bartell was an Army Aircorp Tech Sergeant in World War II in 1944 when he was captured and held for nearly 13 months as a prisoner of war. While Reverend Enos Garvin and Jerry T. Walker fought in Vietnam in the mid to late sixties. All three of these men, barely in their 20′s at the time, were wounded while fighting for their country. Yet even after all of the pain and suffering these men endured, they do not want to be called heroes.
“We got some barley and dehydrated vegetable soup with the bugs in it and all, but what could we do? We had to survive and that was it,” Bartell says.
Walker says, “The only heroes are the dead heroes. Those are the ones I cherish - the ones who never got to come home.”
The Purple Heart was created on August 7, 1782 by General George Washington to honor those wounded or killed in action by the enemy combat.