An Army veteran’s dog tag is now in the hands of his widow, more than 50 years after he lost it when he was injured in the Vietnam War. Ronald D. Hepper kept the military ID in his boots, which were blown off his feet on June 11th, 1969 by an exploding hand grenade. He received the Purple Heart for his injuries, but never found his dog tag.
His wife, Ruth, says she had searched lists online to see if anyone had located the dog tag, but never saw his name. It’s a mystery how it ended up in Russia, but that’s where an American bought it from a street vendor in Moscow and turned it in at the U.S. embassy. The Department of Veterans Affairs then sent it to the Governor of South Dakota, where the Heppers lived.
Hepper died in 2007, but Ruth was recently presented with his dog tag by GovernorDoug Burgumat the state capital. “He would have been thrilled,” she says. “It’s just been very emotional and just very touching that this all transpired the way it did.”
Photo Credit: Getty