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Purple Heart certificates found in vacant home

A treasured piece of history has been safely returned to a Cleveland family after workers employed by the Cuyahoga La...

Posted: Jan 4, 2018 9:22 PM
Updated: Jan 4, 2018 9:22 PM

A treasured piece of history has been safely returned to a Cleveland family after workers employed by the Cuyahoga Land Bank made a startling discovery inside a vacant home.

Two scrolls - carefully preserved - and a scrapbook filled with photos were found after the home went into foreclosure and was acquired by the Land Bank for renovation.

It turns out, the scrolls contained two original Purple Heart certificates for two brothers who died in combat in World War II within one month of each other in the summer of 1944.

Both were signed by President Franklin Roosevelt and honored the young Cleveland soldiers for their bravery and heroism.

Even more remarkable, the Land Bank was able locate descendants and return a treasured piece of history more than 70 years later.

Land Bank President Gus Frangos commissioned a team to begin piecing the family history together.

"Wouldn't it be nice if we could somehow find the next of kin?" he asked.

They did.

Property records revealed that Mary Connors and her husband purchased the home not long after their sons were killed in action.

The Land Bank was able to trace the family history that led it to both her grandson and great-grandson who remain in the Cleveland area.

"We knew of the medals and what had happened," Chuck Connors, Jr said. "What we didn't know was that they were missing."

The family history was found by Marvin Stover, owner of Beneficial Properties, who works with the Land Bank to clean out vacant homes.

"We look for more things of meaning," said Stover, who treats homes like sacred space that should be recognized as once being vibrant homes.

A photo book also contained carefully preserved photographs of Mary Connors, who was honored several months later, dedicating the U.S.S. Towhee minesweeper.

The ship was among scores of them built by the Lorain based American Shipbuilding Company.

The family was presented with both the scrolls and the photo book during a ceremony at Land Bank headquarters.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313942

Reported Deaths: 7240
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21580258
Hinds20330415
Harrison17879309
Rankin13594278
Jackson13429246
Madison10088217
Lee9970174
Jones8370163
Forrest7670152
Lauderdale7188241
Lowndes6387146
Lamar622486
Lafayette6184118
Washington5332133
Bolivar4801132
Oktibbeha462198
Panola4582106
Pearl River4506146
Marshall4435103
Warren4386121
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Monroe4107133
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Neshoba4030176
Lincoln3962110
Hancock378486
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Sunflower335990
Tate333384
Pike3316105
Scott315773
Alcorn312768
Yazoo311469
Itawamba299777
Copiah296865
Coahoma295179
Simpson294988
Tippah288168
Prentiss279760
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Leake267473
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George247848
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Holmes188873
Clay185254
Stone182433
Tallahatchie178541
Clarke177980
Calhoun170532
Yalobusha164238
Smith162334
Walthall133945
Greene130533
Lawrence128524
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123042
Carroll121828
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107033
Tunica105226
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
Humphreys96533
Kemper95728
Franklin83623
Quitman80716
Choctaw76318
Wilkinson67230
Jefferson65528
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 531404

Reported Deaths: 10985
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson765501522
Mobile41036805
Madison34789503
Tuscaloosa25788453
Montgomery24340589
Shelby23449249
Baldwin21154308
Lee15882171
Calhoun14511314
Morgan14306279
Etowah13843353
Marshall12232223
Houston10570281
Elmore10068205
Limestone9974151
Cullman9676194
St. Clair9661243
Lauderdale9427241
DeKalb8831186
Talladega8227176
Walker7241277
Autauga6926108
Jackson6814112
Blount6678137
Colbert6306134
Coffee5519119
Dale4838111
Russell441538
Chilton4296112
Franklin426082
Covington4129118
Tallapoosa4023152
Escambia393677
Chambers3573123
Dallas3551152
Clarke351161
Marion3122101
Pike310977
Lawrence300398
Winston274473
Bibb260964
Geneva250477
Marengo249564
Pickens234461
Barbour231057
Hale223077
Butler216069
Fayette212562
Henry188844
Cherokee185245
Randolph180542
Monroe177540
Washington167339
Macon159650
Clay156756
Crenshaw152557
Cleburne148941
Lamar142535
Lowndes138853
Wilcox127130
Bullock122841
Conecuh110529
Perry107726
Coosa107628
Sumter104732
Greene92534
Choctaw60724
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