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Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Genealogy & History

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This article was contributed by: Jerry Head

Valentine Drews, Veteran Of World War, Honored

Valentine A. Drews, 712 New York avenue, is to receive a Purple Heart with his name engraved upon it from the United States War Department, according to a letter received by him Monday.

The citation is for wounds received by Mr. Drews while in action in France on August 1, 1918, when he was serving as a corporal in Company C, 127th Infantry.

Mr. Drews left Sheboygan on August 6, 1917, as a member of Company C. Escaping quarantine at Camp Merritt, he embarked with the other members of his company, Feb. 16th, 1918. He participated in engagements in the Alsace-Lorraine, Soissons and Chateau-Thierry sectors, besides other engagements which placed him in some of the most conspicuous places in the history of the World war.

He fell on the field at Chateau-Thierry when a machine gun bullet struck him in the breast near the heart. Another bullet passed through his body, while another struck him in the right arm, and pieces of shrapnel struck him below the left knee. All these wounds were received before he fell to the ground, where he had to lie for nine hours before being carried from the field.

The body wound almost proved fatal, for the bullet penetrated his chest within half an inch of his heart. The wound in the knee gave him the greatest trouble, however, the bone having been shattered.

After receiving the wounds, he was taken to Base Hospital No. 27, the Pittsburgh unit hospital, located at Angiers, France, where he was kept for treatment for four months.

Mr. Drews left France Dec. 27, 1918, on the transport Madawaska, which carried 1,200 wounded soldiers back to the United States, landing at Newport News, Va., Jan. 11. He was transferred to Camp Herman, Ohio, where he was mustered out of service.

The Purple Heart decoration was originally conferred upon heroes of the Revolutionary war. Only three soldiers, all non-commissioned officers, had been honored by being decorated with it until its recent revival when it was decided by the war department to thus cite World war heroes who had made extraordinary sacrifices while in action.

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