WWII Vet Finally Receives Long-Overdue Medals - New York News

WWII Vet Finally Receives Long-Overdue Medals

Posted: Updated:
BROOKHAVEN, Pa. -

A local World War II veteran is giving new meaning to the phrase, "It's never too late."  He's waited more than 60 years for the medals he earned in combat, fighting off the Germans.  Friday afternoon, he finally received them.

John Warhola did already have two medals for his service in World War II, the good conduct medal and the Purple Heart.  He's proud of those awards but not quite satisfied, because he was supposed to receive even more medals.

"Oh yes, there were eight altogether."

Warhola says he's been waiting for them for decades.

"Oh I'd say since about 1950," Warhola insisted.

That's the same year he married his wife -- 63 years ago.

"I tell you it's a long time," Warhola told Fox 29.  "And I'll be proud to get them, if they give them to me."

We asked the veteran if it wasn't too late.

"It's not too late, not for me," Warhola answered.  "It's never too late."

Warhola was only a teenager when he saw his best friend die in combat.  And he himself took a bullet from a sniper.

"It was like a train hit me very hard, or like a bus," Warhola explained.  "I flew up in the air and came down on all fours."

So those missing medals mean something to him.

"I thought I deserved them," Warhola said.  "I fought for what I thought was the right thing to do at time."

Jennifer Bail, Warhola's granddaughter, decided to take action late last year, and discovered her grandfather wasn't the only veteran owed medals.

"The lady I spoke with at the VFW said a lot of the soldiers slipped through the cracks, their paperwork," she said.

Bail wasn't going to let that injustice stand, so she contacted Congressman Bob Brady.  A couple of weeks ago, all the missing medals arrived.

"I was so excited," Bail said. "But I was like, I can't just give them to him."

So Bail decided to surprise her grandfather. She told him they had to travel to a VFW convention to get them.

"He thinks he's just going to sign for them," Bail explained.  "He's actually being presented in front of the convention by one of the brigadier generals."

On Friday afternoon, 87-year-old John Warhola finally received his medals, before it became too late.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Pennsbury East and West High Schools Lockdown Lifted

    Pennsbury East and West High Schools Lockdown Lifted

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 9:48 AM EDT2014-04-16 13:48:13 GMT
    Pennsbury High School East and West has lifted a lockdown placed on the school after an unidentified individual was spotted in the building at 8:45am.
    Pennsbury High School East and West have lifted a lockdown placed on the school after an unidentified individual was spotted in the building at 8:45am.
  • Chestnut Hill Student Found Dead In Dorm

    Chestnut Hill Student Found Dead In Dorm

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 12:12 PM EDT2014-04-16 16:12:07 GMT
    Philadelphia Police found 22-year old Bradley David Amerman, a senior business major, not breathing and pronounced him dead at the scene.
    Philadelphia Police found 22-year old Bradley David Amerman, a senior business major, not breathing and pronounced him dead at the scene.
  • Fire Crews Battle 2-Alarm Fire in Folcroft

    Fire Crews Battle 2-Alarm Fire in Folcroft

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 10:47 AM EDT2014-04-16 14:47:07 GMT
    SkyFOX flew over the 2900 block of Heather Road when the bulk of the fire was knocked off. Fire crews arrived to the scene just before 7a.m.
    SkyFOX flew over the 2900 block of Heather Road when the bulk of the fire was knocked off. Fire crews arrived to the scene just before 7a.m.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Giant whale pulled out of Jersey City harbor

    Giant whale pulled out of Jersey City harbor

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 12:18 PM EDT2014-04-16 16:18:38 GMT
    A whale that was found dead earlier this week in New York harbor has been transported to the Caven Point Marine Terminal in Jersey City.
    A whale that was found dead earlier this week in New York harbor has been transported to the Caven Point Marine Terminal in Jersey City.   The United States Army Corps of Engineers successfully extracted the 60 ton giant from the water around 8:00  a.m. on Wednesday. 
  • Search for arsonist targeting Brooklyn churches

    Search for arsonist targeting Brooklyn churches

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 9:09 AM EDT2014-04-16 13:09:23 GMT
    The hunt is on for the person who has set fires at three churches in three days in Brooklyn during Holy Week. Police say the first fire was started at 2:45 a.m. Saturday at The Greater New Beginnings Church in East Flatbush. They say newspapers were lit inside the doorway of the church.
    The hunt is on for the person who has set fires at three churches in three days in Brooklyn during Holy Week. Police say the first fire was started at 2:45 a.m. Saturday at The Greater New Beginnings Church in East Flatbush. They say newspapers were lit inside the doorway of the church.
  • Robert De Niro says Tribeca Film Festival is his passion

    Robert De Niro says Tribeca Film Festival is his passion

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 8:01 AM EDT2014-04-16 12:01:20 GMT
    Robert De Niro is a family man, a filmmaker, an entrepreneur and one of my favorite actors of all time. He's also a co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, which has more to see than ever before. De Niro wears just as many hats on screen as he does in real life. The father of six starred in six films last year, owns four restaurants and a hotel, and still finds time each spring for the Tribeca Film Festival, Lower Manhattan's annual cinematic showcase.
    Robert De Niro is a family man, a filmmaker, an entrepreneur and one of my favorite actors of all time. He's also a co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, which has more to see than ever before. De Niro wears just as many hats on screen as he does in real life. The father of six starred in six films last year, owns four restaurants and a hotel, and still finds time each spring for the Tribeca Film Festival, Lower Manhattan's annual cinematic showcase.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices