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Purple Heart is finally given to rightful owner

Purple Heart (Reuters)
Purple Heart (Reuters)

GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. (AP) -- A Purple Heart medal has finally been delivered to its rightful owner...44 years later.

Fred Jenness was a Navy Seabee when he was wounded in Vietnam in 1969.

Even though the Golden Valley veteran's family and friends encouraged him to pursue the Purple Heart, Jenness never sought the medal until 2004.

The classified nature of his work compounded the delay, but an archivist in the National Museum of the Navy in Washington found logs and records confirming the account.

He received it Monday during a ceremony at Golden Valley City Hall.

Jenness says the award is an important reminder to his grandchildren of the sacrifices of servicemen and women.

He has already received the Combat Action Ribbon, the Vietnam Service Medal and other awards for his service.