95-year-old WWII veteran finally gets medals - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

95-year-old WWII veteran finally gets medals

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A 95-year-old WWII veteran finally receives the medals he deserves.

Stauffer Johnson of Aplington received numerous medals and ribbons from Senator Joni Ernst today. One of the many medals included The Silver Star, the U.S. military's third highest decoration for valor in combat.

Senator Joni Ernst says, "We just wanted to make sure he was given the honor he should have received so long ago."

A moment 70 years in the making was made possible after his great-nephew reached out to Senator Ernst.

Chad Buss says, "It's time for him to deserve some recognition."

As a young man, Johnson was drafted into the Army. He was on the second wave at Normandy during WWII.

Buss says, "I cant imagine what he had to see and go through being on that second wave. He was part of a 3 man team, carrying an 85 pound plate on his back and when they stepped off the landing craft, he took a deep breath and went right to the bottom of the ocean."

Some of the other medals he received include: Combat Infantryman's Badge, a Bronze Star and a variety of other service ribbons from WWII. Family and friends gathered at the Maple Manor Nursing Home for a ceremony finally honoring a man part of our Greatest Generation.

Even though it has taken so long to get his medals, family members say the timing is perfect. Johnson's home was destroyed by the tornado in 2008 and the medals would have been lost.

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