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Nine years after the fact, a Purple Heart is given

Post by Matt Misterek / The News Tribune on Feb. 20, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
February 20, 2012 6:25 pm

A Tacoma man who was wounded in Iraq will receive his Purple Heart nearly nine years late in a ceremony Tuesday at Joint Base-Lewis McChord.

Marine Corps veteran Kenneth McAllister will be presented with the nation’s oldest military decoration for combat wounds he suffered on April 1, 2003, while serving in Iraq with a 1st Marine Division tank battalion based at Camp Pendleton, Calif.

McAllister joined the Marines in 2000 and was honorably discharged in 2004 with the rank of lance corporal. Last August he contacted the Tacoma office of U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell asking for help getting the Purple Heart he should have received. His application was reviewed and his Purple Heart was approved Jan. 19.

The unit’s commanding officer, Lt. Col. Joseph Raftery, will present the honor to McAllister.

Cantwell will attend the ceremony and deliver remarks.

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