September 05, 2017

Manchin Honored to Secure Purple Heart for Pearl Harbor Survivor Wetzel Sanders

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) helped secure a long overdue Purple Heart earned by Midkiff native, Wetzel “Sundown” Sanders. Sanders was assigned to service in Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attacked the island of O’ahu on December 7, 1941. While assisting in repelling the Japanese attack, Sanders was wounded, receiving shrapnel in his right knee. The Purple Heart is a U.S. military decoration awarded in the name of the President to those wounded or killed while serving, on or after April 5, 1917, with the U.S. military. Mr. Sanders served in the United States Army from 1941 to 1945. 

In December 2016, Sanders, who is 94 years old, authorized the office of Senator Manchin to assist him in this endeavor. Today, Senator Manchin spoke with Sanders to congratulate him and learn more about his service in Pearl Harbor.

“Helping Wetzel secure this long-overdue Purple Heart is one of my greatest honors as a U.S. Senator,” Senator Manchin said. “Wetzel’s service speaks for itself. It is because of brave men and women like Wetzel that we remain a safe, strong and secure nation. I thank Wetzel for his service and speak for all West Virginians when I say he makes me proud to be a Mountaineer.”