Adding Lost Hearts & Connecting the Dots April 9, 2015

Every time Purple Hearts Reunited appears in the news, we receive a flush of emails and phone calls. We hear from people who are desperately searching for their loved one’s medals…

“My grandfather received four Purple Hearts during WWII; unfortunately my father’s house was looted after Hurricane Katrina and most of my grandfather’s medal were stolen.”

“My father was wounded during WWII and received a Purple Heart; however, I lost it at some point years ago and would love to again have it in my possession. His wound was in one side of the neck, the bullet exiting the opposite side and although I did not live with him due to divorce, I do recall on many occasions seeing the wounds.”

“When my brother was a teenager and visiting our home, he stole the medals from my grandfather’s drawer and pawned them in Louisiana. We had given up hope finding them, but maybe you can find them. My grandfather would never talk about his time in the war, so I only saw his medals once when he showed them to me by chance, before they were stole. This is a long shot, so if you don’t find them, I understand.”


“My father received a Purple Heart for Korea.  He died three months before I was born.  My older sister was a drug addict who stole my fathers medals and pawned them in the Detroit area roughly 30 years ago.”

… and we also hear from people who have found military medals and artifacts, and have always wondered how to get them back to their rightful owners.

“I heard about your organization on Fox news. I have a Purple Heart medal that I got in an antique store. I do not want any money for it. I would like to make sure it gets to the right people.”

“So glad I found you! … I have a Purple Heart that has to be WWII era since I was given it as a little girl. My uncle was a Civil War military collector and started me collecting WWII military when I was a little girl. Someone gave it to me when I was very young.”

“We found some medals in a shop and bought them because we both have family members in the military and know how precious they are and what they mean. The family sold them in an estate sale, and obviously didn’t want them.”

“Can you find the owner or owner’s family to reunite this medal with the hero or the hero’s family? We are a country that seems to be losing its respect and value for those who sacrifice so much for our freedoms. If you can please let me know what I can do to facilitate the return of the medal to the rightful owner.”

At Purple Hearts Reunited, we work with medal discoverers and military families across the country, connecting lost or stolen military medals and artifacts with their rightful owners. Though it breaks our hearts to hear of medals pawned for money or stolen from someone’s home, we are encouraged on a daily basis by the good Americans who come forward with medals that they have found and are eager to return home.

How can you get involved?

  • Visit our Lost Hearts Database to see if you recognize any veterans’ names. Send us your information if you are missing military medals, or are searching for the lost medals of loved ones.
  • Search for discarded military medals at pawn shops, antique stores, or flea markets and get in touch with us when you find them.
  • Spread the word about Purple Hearts Reunited and our mission so that more people get in touch to report found medals and veterans in search of their own. Follow us and share stories on Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for our email newsletters and encourage your friends to do the same.
  • Consider making a contribution to Purple Hearts Reunited, so that we can connect the dots and return these lost medals to their rightful owners. There are lots of ways for individuals, businesses, and organizations to support PHR. DONATE TODAY.

Leave a Reply