Friday, September 14, 2007

WWII, One Man's Story, Part 7 of 8

A few months after receiving the letter describing the circumstances of their son's death, Mr. and Mrs. Williams Sanders Sr. received the following letter from the United States Navy.

NAVY DEPARTMENT
BUREAU OF NAVAL PERSONNEL
WASHINGTON 25 DC

25 September 1945

Mr. Williams Sanders Sr.
46 Second Street
Heilwood, Pennsylvania

Dear Mr. Sanders:
The Bureau has the honor to inform you of the award of the Purple Heart and certificate to your late son, William Sanders Jr., Seaman First Class, United States Naval Reserve, in accordance with General Order 186 of January 21, 1943 which reads in part as follows:

"The Secretary of the Navy is further authorized and directed to award the Purple Heart posthumously, in the name of the President of the United States, to any persons who, while serving in any capacity with the Navy, Marine Corps or Coast Guard of the United States, since December 6, 1941, are killed in action or die as a direct result of wounds received in action with an enemy of the United States, or as a result of an act of such enemy."

The medal is being forwarded under separate cover. Please could now is receipt on the enclosed form.

By direction of Chief Of Naval Personnel.

Sincerely yours,

R.J. Hardy
Commander, USN
Enlisted Performance Division

I'm certain that Hester and William Sanders were very proud of their son for a number of reasons but receiving the Purple Heart medal of honor must have made their hearts swell with even more pride. I can't imagine a greater pain than one must feel at losing a child. Perhaps their only consolation was knowing he died with honor serving his country.

The complete series of WWII, One Man's Story:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8

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