Hoosier hero receives highest distinction from France for role in World War II

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - A Hoosier hero received France's highest distinction.

The French Legion of Honor Medal was presented to World War II veteran Retired Private Harry A. Wolfe.

"The day means to me one word. Everything," Wolfe said.

The 98-year-old received the honor from the Consul General of France for the Midwest region.

"Being the grandson of a WWI veteran and a WWII veteran means a lot to me. When I read his memoir, I have a thought for my grandparents who endured war," French Consul General Guillaume Lacroix said.

Wolfe's only child, Diane Ross, was there to witness the moment.

"It has just been a blessing because he is so emotional about what he's done. He didn't talk about the war when I was growing up, but as he got older, it became more important to him to get the story out," Ross said.

After years, Wolfe finally told his family war stories, including the night he was shot in the leg and left wounded for nine hours. Even now, he wants the focus to be on those who didn't make it back home.

"I love everybody involved and those that are in the cemeteries who gave it all, and I sit here as a representative for all of them," Wolfe said.

And this high distinction belongs to them all.

"There's no stolen valor for me because I lived it and the best stories that we'll never hear are in the cemeteries," he said.

Vice President Mike Pence and Governor Eric Holcomb also honored Wolfe with personal letters that were read during the ceremony.