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Veteran receives his medals.



Byline: David Steves The Register-Guard

SALEM - A Eugene veteran of World War II received his Purple Heart Purple Heart

U.S. medal awarded to those wounded in military action. [Am. Hist.: Misc.]

See : Bravery
 and Prisoner of War medals Tuesday, more than 60 years after earning them through his service in the war's Pacific Theater Pacific Theater or Pacific Theatre may refer to
  • Asian and Pacific theatre of World War I
  • Pacific War
  • Pacific Ocean theater of World War II
.

Omar McGuire, 85, was awarded his medals in a ceremony in the Capitol. His wife, Lucy-Le, and Gov. Ted Kulongoski Theodore R. "Ted" Kulongoski (born November 5 1940, in rural Missouri[1]) is an American Democratic politician. Since 2003, he has served as the Governor of Oregon. He was re-elected in 2006.  pinned the medals on McGuire's blue blazer as the audience in the governor's ceremonial office gave a standing ovation.

McGuire served in the Philippines with the U.S. Army Air Corps. He survived bombing by the Japanese but was captured and forced to endure the 100-mile "Bataan Death March Bataan Death March

(April 1942) Forced march of 70,000 U.S. and Filipino prisoners of war (World War II) captured by the Japanese in the Philippines. From the southern end of the Bataan Peninsula, the starving and ill-treated prisoners were force-marched 63 mi (101 km) to a
."

McGuire later was forced with other U.S. captives to provide prisoner labor. He survived bombing by the United States of the Japanese steel mill where he was working at the end of World War II End of World War II can refer to:
  • End of World War II in Europe
  • End of World War II in Asia
.

McGuire was active with several veteran organizations but it wasn't until recently that he contacted the military to inquire about medals, since he was discharged without having ever pursued them.

Given the chance to address the audience, McGuire did not speak of his own military experiences leading up to the belated awarding of his medals. Instead, he praised his wife, whom he married shortly after the war.

"Anybody who has been married to a POW for 60 years deserves some kind of a medal," he said with a smile.
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Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:General News; Omar McGuire is honored more than 60 years after his service
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:May 31, 2006
Words:232
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