June 6, 1944, marked the largest seaborne invasion in history. More than 150 thousand American soldiers stormed the beaches of Normandy, France to push the Nazis out of the Western Europe. One of the survivors was Sargent Harless Cornelious Underwood.
His son, Carl Underwood, said his dad would sometimes talk about the war, but did not want to remember everything that happened since he was living with permanent scars.
“Sometimes I would hear him talking to my uncles late at night. He would talk a lot about the war,” Underwood said. “But he did have burns on his neck and his chest, he wouldn’t run around with his shirt off cause he was kind of ashamed to let people see his scars on his chest.”
Underwood’s father received many medals while serving in the army, including two bronze stars which he physically does not have.
“These are European medals, plus the purple heart. And what is not there is the two bronze stars that he earned and it is in this Young American Patriots book here states that he earned two bronze stars that he never received,” Underwood said.
Underwood said he has been working with many government officials to try to locate his father’s bronze stars. He hopes one day he will be able to put them in the medal box with the rest.
Sargent Underwood made it back home to the United States after a medical discharge. He returned home to West Virginia and would later pass away from lung cancer.