- Associated Press - Thursday, September 3, 2015

RISON, Ark. (AP) - A World War II veteran from Arkansas has received six medals for his service, 70 years after the end of the war.

Family members, dozens of friends and well-wishers attended a Wednesday ceremony held at an assisted living facility in Rison, where U.S. Rep. Bruce Westerman presented the honors to 95-year-old Cordy A. Ramer Jr.

“I have a deep appreciation for each and every one of you, and I thank you all for coming out here today,” Ramer said, fighting back tears and stroking the hand of his wife of 72 years, Evelyn, who stood beside him as he sat.

His son told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (https://bit.ly/1LNDAZX ) that he worked with Westerman’s office to ensure his father received the medals due to him. Ramer previously hadn’t gotten them because of missing paperwork.

“He deserves these medals, and I wanted to make sure we got them for him while he was still around,” John Ramer said.

Westerman presented Ramer with the World War II Victory Medal, a European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, an American Campaign Medal, and Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters, a Prisoner of War Medal and a World War II Honorable Service Lapel Button.

The older Ramer said he flew 29 missions and 175 combat hours during his service in the U.S. Army Air Corps. Ramer survived an attack during his 29th flight mission in which his plane was one of six shot down by the Germans, killing his pilot, co-pilot, radio operator, top turret gunner and ball turret gunner.

Before dying, the pilot ordered the remaining four servicemen to bail out at about 25,000 feet, and Ramer landed in a field near a small German village.

He was turned over to German authorities who sent him to Frankfurt for interrogation. He then was sent to a prison camp in northern Germany and spent about nine months there as a prisoner of war before the Russians liberated him.

Ramer was sent to France and then discharged from the Army in December 1945.

“(Ramer) is really part of the greatest generation, because we realize the contributions he and others made,” Westerman said. “They truly are the greatest generation.”


Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, https://www.arkansasonline.com

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