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Katherine Grandstrand, Forum News Service, Published December 08 2013

Rural Dickinson WWII vet gets long-overdue medals

DICKINSON, N.D. – One day short of 72 years after the attacks on Pearl Harbor, nearly 69 years after he was drafted and 67 years after he came home, World War II veteran Anton Tuhy, 91, received three medals and a lapel pin Friday from Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D.

Tuhy was joined in the Veterans Room at the Stark County Courthouse by sons Clarence, Stark County sheriff, and Ray, who drove from Missoula, Mont., to spend the day with his father. His daughter, Darlene Billman, is a snowbird in Arizona and was not in attendance.

Tuhy was a 19-year-old working on the family farm in Manning on the “day that will live in infamy” and was drafted into the U.S. Army three years later on Dec. 15, 1944 at age 22.

He spent time at Fort Snelling, Minn., Fort Knox, Ky., and Fort Leavenworth, Kan., before being deployed to the Philippines. While in the Army, Anton worked as a cook, baker and medical aid. He was discharged at Fort Lewis, Wash.

“It was an honor to serve in the United States Army,” Anton told Hoeven.

The medals Anton received Friday were the Good Conduct Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal and the World War II Honorable Service Lapel Pin.

Part of what Tuhy did in the Philippines was help clean up towns that were destroyed in battle.

Hoeven has been working to make sure veterans like Anton receive their medals before it’s too late.

Tuhy’s parents, Joseph and Mary, had 12 children – six boys and six girls – who they raised on a farm in Manning. Tuhy married Julia Rambousek on Oct. 30, 1944, and the couple were married for nearly 70 years until Julia’s death in 2012.

Anton still resides on the rural Dickinson farm he purchased in 1947 after returning to the U.S.

“I think it was an honor” to receive the medals, Anton said. “It was nice for (Hoeven) to come out.”

The medals will be displayed prominently in Anton’s home, either on top of the TV stand or near his wedding picture, Clarence said.