Belton, SC — A World War II Purple Heart has been returned to the family of a fallen soldier.
Andrew Staton, a researcher for Genealogytrails.com, said the Purple Heart was found inside a record player purchased from a flea market at the Anderson Jockey lot in Belton, South Carolina, last October. The young man who found the medal began looking for information about its owner, Sgt. James Carithers.
“I’m most amazed by him that he actually took the time to start researching and start trying to piece it together himself, and he contacted us at Genealogy Trails, and we kind of took it from there,” Staton said.
During his research, the teenager found a 2000 post from a woman looking for information about family members, one of whom was Carithers.
The woman who made the post, Arrista Pottle, said she is Carithers’ niece, and that he died before she was born. Her mother did not speak of her brother often, she said.
“I guess it was still very painful for her that he had died when he was very young,” Pottle said.
This isn’t the first time a Purple Heart has been returned to the family of a solider who died in combat. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, a Purple Heart and seven other military medals were recently found in a laundry room storage locker. They belonged to 2nd Lt. Hyman Markel, who was killed on May 3, 1945 in Italy’s Po Valley while fighting German troops. The medals were returned to his daughter, Hyla Merin, who was born five months after her father died.