Veteran receives Purple Heart 72 years after his service in World War II

Veteran receives Purple Heart 72 years after his service in World War II
Posted at 12:49 AM, Aug 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-08 16:49:02-04

Editor's note: A prior version of this story misstated the person who pinned the medals to Shoop's chest. WCPO regrets this error.

HILLSBORO, Ohio -- Twenty-year-old Harry Shoop wasn't concerned with honor in 1945, when he took a bullet through the hand fighting for the Allies in the Phillipines. According to his daughter, Patty Kendrick, he simply wrapped the injured hand and continued with his mission.

"He didn't seek treatment 'til like two weeks after he was shot," Kendrick said.

He waited even longer to seek recognition.

On Monday, the 95-year-old veteran finally received the honors he'd earned 72 years earlier: The Purple Heart, which recognizes that he was wounded in battle, and Bronze Star, which is awarded to soldiers who demonstrate "heroic" or otherwise meritorious achievement in combat zones.

"You could tell up there, he was beaming," Kendrick said. "He earned it, and we fought hard to make sure this day happened."

U.S. Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, pinned those awards to Shoop's chest. Speaking at the ceremony was Brig. Gen. Gordon Ellis, current deputy commanding general of the infantry unit in which Shoop served so long ago.

For Shoop, the medals are a reminder of the sacrifice he made and the love he has for his country.

"Sometimes they come at a cost," he said. "(But) America is the greatest country in the world."