World War II Veteran Honored

World War II Veteran Honored
By:  Arnold Wyrick

Willisville, IL -- At 83 years old Wilbur "Wib" Alms of Willisville need a little help getting around. But as young soldier in World War II fighting in France, Alms was shot through both ankles.

"The time in France was easy, it was rough, it was hard. And they was there to kill you that was one thing for sure," Alms said.

He sat quietly as U.S. Congressman Jerry Costello began presenting Alms with an admirable list of combat medals.

"He not only fought for our country but he left his blood on the ground for our country. We want to remind people it was sacrifices like that, that provided the freedom and opportunity that we enjoy today," Congressman Costello said.

Alms family and friends filled the Willisville Town Hall for his medal presentation ceremony. Wilbur says he never gave much thought to his service to our country. And he never imagined he'd be recognized for his heroics on the battlefield. But there were two of the medals that meant a great deal to him.

" There are a couple this Purple Heart, and this Combat Infantryman Badge 1st Award, because they go together," Alms said.

Alms shared a very light hearted moment with Congressman Costello during the ceremony, " You want to say a few words," asked Congressman Costello?

To which Alms replied," Well I don't know what it would be, whether it would be good or bad. We did drink a lot of cognac," chuckled Alms.

As the room filled with laughter, Congressman Costello asked through his laughter, " Was that before of after you were wounded?"

"Before," Alms replied.

In all Wilbur Alms received a Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Good Conduct Medal, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal & Bronze Star Achievement, World War II Victory Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, Honorable Service Lapel Button WW II, Expert Badge & Bayonet Bar, Sharpshooter Badge & Rifle Bar, and Marksman Badge & Carbine Bar & Pistol Bar.