|WWII Veteran - Aaron Carey 1922-2002|
Aaron Carey enlisted with the U.S Army on December 11, 1942. He was attached to the 612th Tank Destroyer battalion and was part of the European campaign. On Dec. 17, 1944, at the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge, he was captured by the Germans at Honsfeld. After having his coat, gloves and boots taken away, he was marched toward the Prisoner of War camp. It was bitter cold and he had nothing to eat during the entire trip. He endured several months as a POW until he was liberated.
After the war, he returned to civilian life and raised a family like many other veterans. Carey never realized he had honors coming to him. Fifty-five years after WWII, he was presented 7 medals from United States Congressman Tom Coburn. Carey was awarded the Bronze Star Medal, the POW medal, an European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign medal (with service stars representing the 8 major battles he participated in), a U.S. Victory medal, a Good Conduct Medal, a Combat and Infantryman badge, and a Rifleman Qualification Combat Infantry Army Award medal. He was also awarded a Cross of Valor by the State of Oklahoma.
Later when interviewed about his wartime experience, Carey said he felt it was important that the young people of today learn about the wars America has fought and the sacrifices made to keep the country free. He said he had told his children about it when they were young like many other veterans did, but he didn't know if the stories had been passed on to the younger generation. He said if given the opportunity to tell young people about WWII, he would advise them, "Let's not go through another thing like this again."
A news article about my grandpa receiving his medals -
(The Wagoner Tribune; Wagoner, Oklahoma; December 2, 1999; p. 5A, 13A.)
Thank you to all the veterans who have served to keep our country free. You service and sacrifices are not forgotten.
Thanks for reading.
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