Fort Hood: Army presents Purple Heart to fallen WWII soldier’s family

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FORT HOOD, Texas (KWTX) The Army Thursday presented a Purple Heart Medal to the family of Staff. Sgt. Jessie Paul Johnson, who died in action in World War II.

Cary Johnson accepted the Purple Heart Medal on behalf of a brother he never met. Jessie Paul Johnson died in action in World War II. (Photo by Alex Gibbs)

On March 16th, 1944, Johnson, who as part of the 1st Cavalry Division’s 8th Cavalry Regiment, helped reinforce the Los Negros landing at Salami Beach and invaded Manus Island.

The goal was to take the last airfield controlled by the Japanese.

Johnson was mortally wounded after exposing himself to enemy fire while providing cover for his platoon.

He passed away from his wounds the next day.

Seventy five years later, his younger brother Cary, who was born two years after his brother was killed, was in attendance to accept the award.

“To be able to be here today and see him recognized is just hard to put into words,” he said.

“I have no memories of Paul,” he said, but he does remember the stories that his parents and older brothers told him.

“They made it like I almost knew him,” he said.

“My dad spoke of him a lot while I was growing up.”

Cary says he’s proud for what his brother did.