Purple Heart found on NY road returned to veteran’s family after years of searching

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NYACK, N.Y.  — The family of a World War II veteran has a piece of his history back — a service medal.

(Jennifer Bisram/PIX11)

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) on Sunday presented the family of Bernard McNamara with his Purple Heart medal. It had been found along a Rockland County road several years ago with the inscription of "B.J. McNamara on December 9, 1943."

Those who initially searched for the owner discovered that there were numerous men with that name who served in World War II. Schumer's office began looking into the situation earlier this month and was able to determine who the medal belonged to.

McNamara died in 1975. He was wounded during the war, and also held as a prisoner of war for over a year.

“It is a privilege and an honor to return this Purple Heart to the family of decorated World War II veteran, Bernard J. McNamara,” said Sen. Schumer. “McNamara was a true American hero and put his life on the line to serve this country. It’s unfortunate that the medal has gone missing for so long but I am humbled to have the opportunity to present it to the McNamara family."