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96-year-old Army Veteran wounded in Korean War awarded the Purple Heart

A St. Peter Korean War, World War II Army Veteran is awarded the Purple Heart
A St. Peter Korean War, World War II Army Veteran is awarded the Purple Heart 02:00

SAINT PETER, Minn. — Nearly 73 years after being wounded in the Korean War, Earl Meyer finally received a Purple Heart on Friday afternoon. Meyer was grateful and overwhelmed.

"I don't care for all this stuff," said Meyer.

A Lifelong resident of Saint Peter, his Army career started in France during World War II.

"He wasn't even old enough to sign up and he was underweight and he gained 25 pounds just so he could serve in World War II," said U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar. 

He returned home but immediately went back overseas to Korea where he was hit by shrapnel on the front lines.

"The medic that treats him says, 'we're gonna make sure you get a Purple Heart for what you just did.' " Sen. Klobuchar explained. "That medic may have died and the records that showed Earl's heroism were long gone."

The sacrifice of his company is something he still doesn't like to talk about. But after 70 years, a conversation with his daughters changed everything.

"I told them about being wounded and then they thought I better try to get a Purple Heart for it and that's how it got started," said Meyer.

After navigating a sea of red tape, Earl's family received word just a few weeks ago that he would finally get the recognition he deserved. 

"On this day of celebrating underdogs and people making it, Earl is truly the Naz Reid of Purple Heart recipients," said Sen. Klobuchar. 

"They ask the people with Purple Hearts to stand up and now I can too," said Meyer.

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