Purple Heart Medal for WWII Hero Finds a Home at the National Museum of the Pacific War
On April 3, 2013, the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Department of Texas, Purple Hearts Reunited, Inc., and the Admiral Nimitz Foundation held a joint ceremony at the National Museum of the Pacific War, 310 East Austin St., Fredericksburg, Texas, to honor a military hero who died in WWII and whose Purple Heart medal was subsequently lost or stolen. This Purple Heart medal was donated to the museum by Captain Zachariah Fike, founder of Purple Hearts Reunited.
The medal for Fireman 1st Class Howard Donald Seibert was found in a box of Medals owned by Mr. Tom Shedler, possibly a military friend or military collector. Seibert was aboard the USS Tullibee (SS-284), one of the Gato class submarines that were largely responsible for the destruction of the Japanese merchant marine and a large portion of the Imperial Japanese Navy in World War II. While on patrol from Pearl Harbor, she stopped at Midway to top off with fuel. After leaving on 14 March 1944, she was never heard from again. Only after the war was it learned that the Tullibee had engaged a Japanese transport ship and fired two torpedoes. One of the torpedoes ran a circular course and sank the Tullibee by herself, killing most of the sailors aboard. It appears that Mr. Seibert had been an Orphan and only his foster mother, with whom he had lived only a short time, was listed at his time of death.
His Purple Heart will forever have a home of honor.