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Sioux Falls WWII Vet finally receives medals


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO AM) - For Charles (Charlie) Bledsoe, the wait is over.  In a ceremony Wednesday at the VA Medical Center in Sioux Falls, Charlie was presented his Purlple Heart and Bronze Star medals he earned in battle.

     "I survived D-Day, the battles in the hedgerows, the Battle of the Bulge, but in the battle of Leipzig, I took on a tank and lost," said Bledsoe.  He remembers being loaded into a Jeep and watching a Chaplain giving someone last rights; "then I realized it was for me."

     Bledsoe said shortly after that, he went into a coma only to awaken in France to learn the war was over and President Roosevelt had died.

     Senator Tim Johnson presented Bledsoe his Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for meritorious achievement in combat.

     Commander of the MIlitary Order of the Purple Heart, Sioux Falls, Mark Williamson said "We are proud to help veterans like Charlie who didn't have it annotated on their discharge papers that they were wounded.

(Wednesday, May 1, 2013 by Mark Brown)