WICHITA, KS (KSNW/CNN) – At a ceremony Saturday, a fallen soldier’s Purple Heart finally found its way to his family after more than 70 years.
Leo Farris Jr. was just 19 years old in 1945 when he was killed in Germany near the end of World War II. His Purple Heart representing his sacrifices never made it to his family.
But the medal was recently found in a dumpster at a Kansas landfill.
Maurice Benton says he was digging through a box he recovered from the landfill before demolition when he saw an old box buried amongst the trash. The box contained Farris’ Purple Heart.
With the help of Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, the medal was presented to Farris’ niece, Connie Hosford, at a special ceremony.
Hosford says her family is blessed to have the Purple Heart in their possession.
"I just couldn't believe it. I have no idea how it made the journey it did, but it's meant to be back with my family,” Hosford said.
Farris was also awarded two Bronze Stars for valor.
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