WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – On Saturday, 99-year-old Pat Hathaway received her late husband, Charles Jennings, war medals after he died 77 years ago.
“Surprised because it’s such a long time ago,” said Pat Hathaway, who was formerly married to Charles Jennings.
Hathaway’s daughter Ann Boll surprised her with these medals.
Charles Jennings was Hathaway’s first husband. He died during WWII in Germany.
“I knew from a very young age that mom had been married before to Charles and that he had died in the war,” said Hathaway’s daughter, Ann Boll.
Twenty years ago, Boll requested Jennings’ military records to learn more about him.
She received his war department report of death with basic information, but something else was on there.
“Handwritten notations that said he was entitled to a bronze star, and I knew mom had never gotten it,” Boll said.
It took Boll years to get the medals, but thanks to some help from Sen. Jerry Moran’s office, she was finally able to get the Bronze Star and Purple Heart awards this September.
“Didn’t know anybody else would remember but me,” said Hathaway.
“He wasn’t my dad, but we need to honor that no matter who it is,” Boll said.
Wichita Memorial VFW Post 3115 helped with the ceremony.
The medals will continue to be passed down to Jennings’ family.