BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama native Toulman Y. Freeman died in Europe during World War II. Almost 70 years later, the lost Purple Heart medal he earned for his service is being returned to his family.
A ceremony is being held Saturday at a church in north Alabama to present the medal to Freeman's sole surviving sibling, his 91-year-old sister Willie E. Freeman Butts of Fort Deposit.
A nursing home worker in Robertsdale says she found the damaged medal in January mixed in with refuse from an old dryer. Freeman's widow lived in the nursing home and kept the medal with her until she died in 2008.
The worker contacted the Military Order of the Purple Heart, and a volunteer located the family using Freeman's name, which was engraved on the medal.