ANNANDALE, Va. (WUSA) -- Sixty eight years after earning the honor, 88-year-old World War II veteran John "Jack" Faulconer Jr will be presented with the Bronze Star for Heroism.
Faulconer, who is from Washington and currently lives in Prince William County, Va., was severely wounded in a battle that killed two squad members a few weeks after D-Day in 1943, according to the office of Congressman Gerry Connolly. Faulconer was 18 years old and an infantryman in a machine gun squad in General Patton's 3rd Army.
According to Connolly's office:
"After surviving the battle of Metz, Jack and Patton's 3rd Army advanced closer to the German border at the Saar Valley. According to Jack while advancing up a hill the Germans were defending, his machine gun squad was advancing under heavy artillery and small arms fire. Two members of his squad were killed. Jack was hit in his left arm and knocked to the ground, after realizing he was alone, behind enemy lines, and his arm severely wounded he waited for nightfall. After nightfall set in Jack crawled out of his position and began walking, staying low to the ground hoping to find fellow Americans.
After some time he finally found fellow Americans and was able to get put on a stretcher and transferred to the battalion aid station. Jack was treated by doctors who hoped they could save his arm from amputation. After many surgeries the doctors were able to save his arm and Jack was transferred to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C."
Years later, Faulconer read that he was potentially eligible for a Bronze Star but didn't know how to determine if he was eligible for the medal so he reached out to Congressman Gerry Connolly. Congressman Connolly and his staff confirmed with the Department of the Army that Faulconer had been awarded the Bronze Star but never received it. He was also awarded the Purple Heart.
Faulconer, his wife Joyce and one son will attend the ceremony for the award at Congressman Connolly's Annandale office. He met Joyce while he was recovering from surgery on his arm at a dance at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. She is also a World War II veteran. They have been married for 65 years and have two children and seven grandchildren.