8 on Your Side: Family Seeks Recognition of Vet's Purple Heart
By Michelle Mortensen, Investigative Reporter - email
LAS VEGAS - Linda and Vern Romans have been fighting to honor their father Eules for more than 12 years. Eules passed away in 1999.
A World War II veteran, Eules Romans spent more than a year in one of the most notorious prison camps in Germany. He landed there after he was severely injured by a grenade blast during a German attack.
Once liberated from the prison camp in 1945, Eules came home. He was sent to a military hospital in Arkansas for treatment, where he received a purple heart.
World War II veterans often received their purple hearts while they were in the hospital recovering. Many of those awards, however, were not officially recorded. Vern and Linda say they do not know if their father's purple heart was recorded. A fire at the National Archives in St. Louis in 1973 destroyed all of his Eules' records.
Without those records, no one will consider his award official, so it can't be honored on his tombstone.
"He deserves to be recognized for everything that he did. That's how I feel. That's why I won't give up," said Linda.
Linda and Vern possess proof their father received a purple heart. They have the medal itself. They also have documentation from the military hospital that shows he left with two medals. One of those medals is the purple heart. Without official documentation, however, they can't validate the award.
"I figured we have enough proof that he was, that he had it," said Vern said.
Vern feels his father's story must be told, so no one forgets the sacrifices of Eules or his generation. Vern says he will keep fighting for his father's honor, no matter how long it takes.
8 on Your Side pored through the Romans' paperwork and discovered they have enough information to request the honor be officially awarded to Eules posthumously.
For that to happen, Linda and Vern have to apply with the Secretary of the Army. 8 on Your Side instructed them on how to do that. They must now wait for word of their father's award. That decision can take up to six months.
If you have a problem you want investigated, call 8 on Your Side at 702-650-1907.
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