Scranton Veteran Receives Overdue Medal

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SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A World War II veteran got the surprise of a lifetime.

Andrew Evanik thought it was just another game of bingo at Jackson Heights Apartments in Scranton Thursday night.

But the 91-year-old veteran received an honor that was long overdue.

Evanik earned a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart for his service, but his Philippine Liberation Medal never came, at least until State Representative Marty Flynn decided to do something about it.

The retired Army Private First Class said he was drafted three months after he graduated from high school.

“I never shot a gun in all my life,” said Evanik.  “They threw a couple of cans in the ocean, they told me to start firing, so I fired a few times, and he said you’re in! You’re a first aid man!”

Evanik was honored for helping four wounded men, even though he was also injured by mortar fire.

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