77
      Thursday
      90 / 74
      Friday
      89 / 73
      Saturday
      84 / 71

      Purple Heart Medal returned to veteran's family in North Myrtle Beach

      On Saturday a special ceremony was held at the Hall of Heroes at the Sands Ocean Dunes Resort to celebrate the recovery of a lost Purple Heart Medal, which had been missing from a North Myrtle Beach family for years.

      Sgt. Horace Roscoe Gore served in the U.S. Army and was the recipient of the Purple Heart Medal.

      In September of 1966, Gore began his tour in the Vietnam War.

      He was a heavily decorated soldier who became a sergeant in just 10-months, at a time when racial injustices were prevalent.

      In May of 1967, Horace was killed in the line of duty when his patrol was ambushed in South Vietnam.

      "I knew that my uncle Horace served bravely in the military. He was a legend to me," said Wesley Davis, Horace's nephew.

      On Saturday, Wesley told WPDE NewsChannel 15 that although he never met his uncle, he still has early childhood memories of the Purple Heart.

      "As a kid, I remember holding the Purple Heart and playing with it. And it had a special place in our house," Wesley said.

      When the medal disappeared, Wesley and the rest of the family were concerned they would never find it again.

      A story WPDE NewsChannel 15 covered in January about another missing Purple Heart got the attention of Kris Fulwood, who contacted Capt. Zachariah Fike, a National Guard Officer who runs Purple Hearts Reunited, an organization that returns missing Purple Hearts to their recipients.

      Although Fulwood couldn't make it to the ceremony on Saturday, WPDE NewsChannel 15 reached out to him.

      He said he had found the Purple Heart Medal in a box outside of a local hotel around two years ago. Since then he had been unsuccessful in his attempts to find the Gore family until he heard about the group Purple Hearts Reunited.

      Fike was able to use his resources to find the family after he saw a post to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund made by David Wilson, who had attended the same high school at the same time as Horace.

      "It was just so awesome. I felt gratified. Very happy about it," Wilson said.

      At this time, Capt. Fike said he receives around three to five Purple Heart Medals each week.

      Currently, he is working on finding and returning 250 Purple Heart Medals back to their rightful recipients.

      Capt. Fike's group Purple Hearts Reunited is a non-profit group, so to help him and his life-long mission of returning Purple Heart Medals to families who have lost loved ones, click here to donate.