Local veteran receives Purple Heart for his service in the Vietnam War

A local veteran received the Purple Heart and other medals he earned but never received Thursday.

Marine veteran Steve Denman, a lifelong Hoosier, was presented the Purple Heart along with the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, and Vietnam Campaign Medal with 1960 Device by Congresswoman Jackie Walorski at her office in Mishawaka Thursday afternoon.

Denman decided to become a Marine after being drafted into the Army in 1968.

Based in Quang Tri Province in Vietnam, Denman was manning a defensive position when he sustained a fragmentation wound to his right shoulder from a hostile rocket.

"The country asked me to do a job and I had an obligation at that time, so I said 'Let's go. OK. We'll get her done'," said Denman. "When I got back I was so happy I got down and kissed the ground when I got off the plane and said 'I'm home'".

The Purple Heart is the oldest military award that is still given to members of the U.S. Military, dating back to the later years of the Revolutionary War.

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