A World War II Purple Heart that was stolen during a home robbery in April mysteriously reappeared on the owner’s front walkway earlier this month. Paul Curtis told The Patriot Ledger that the he and local police believe an “attack of conscience” led to the treasured piece of family history’s mysterious reappearance.
Curtis’s father, Army 1st Lt. Robert Curtis, earned the Purple Heart during the Battle of the Bulge. He was wounded by a German artillery shell that sent 100 pieces of shrapnel into his body on a battlefield in the Ardennes. Curtis described his father’s near death experience to reporters:
“They didn’t think he was going to live, so they triaged him. He lost so much blood. He said the Salvation Army nurses saved him. They gave him blood.”
Six months later his father emerged from the hospital. He suffered from constant back and ankle pain for the rest of his life. He passed away in 1991. Curtis treasured his father’s medal and hoped to pass it on as a family heirloom.
Losing the medal was a devastating loss to this military family. Paul Curtis’s father, mother, nephew, and several of his grandparents and relatives, both male and female, have proudly served in various branches of the U.S. military.
Curtis was ecstatic to see the medal unexpectedly sitting on his walkway one morning. He and local police have not made any arrests for the home invasion. Curtis says he has no idea who might have returned the medal or whether they know about its significance, he’s just happy to have it back.