Gunter Harter was drafted into the military just days after his wedding in 1967. He went on to serve in Vietnam as a squad leader and was wounded in battle in December 1968. But he was never presented with the Purple Heart medal.
Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., called that a 47-year-old mistake. He presented Harter, an immigrant from Germany, with a Purple Heart and the Cold War Recognition Certificate in a ceremony held at the Albertson VFW on Long Island on Friday.
Harter's wife, son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren were there to honor him.
Harter, who reached the rank of sergeant, served in the 4th Battalion, 21st Infantry Division during the war.
The military awards the Purple Heart to service members wounded or killed.