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‘On the mend’ – Daughter surprises father with medal ceremony

Published 12/24/2012, Bemidji Pioneer

Two years ago, while vacationing at Christmas time, someone broke into Arlin Melgaard’s home. The bandit made off with nearly everything he and his wife, Wanda, owned: a car parked in the garage, the 2001 retirement gift containing his military medals and badges, the longtime musician’s electric guitars, even canned goods and coffee filters stored in the cupboard. Over time, the couple had replaced most items, but one piece of his past couldn’t be replaced easily – the shadow box commemorating Melgaard’s Army and reservist career. On Saturday, the 71-year-old Bemidji man, a 40-year veteran, received re-issued medals, badges and service stripes.

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