TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – In recognition of the 75th anniversary of D-Day, Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis has launched a campaign to return nearly 40 unclaimed military medals currently in Florida's Unclaimed Property program.
Operation Return the Valor aims to reunite veterans or their heirs with any medals that may have been lost or forgotten in Florida safety deposit boxes. Patronis used the attention given to WWII veterans during the D-Day anniversary to urge Floridians to help the state find the rightful owners of these medals.
"On D-Day, some of our bravest stormed the beaches of Normandy to defeat evil, and we must never forget their selfless service. Florida alone is home to approximately 61,600 World War II veterans, and their bravery must never be forgotten," Patronis said.
"We can honor these brave military service members by returning these medals, which represent incredible sacrifice. This is the least we can do to honor their courage and bravery. We must keep Florida one of the most veteran-friendly states in the nation. The 1.5 million veterans residing here deserve that.”
Patronis urged anyone with knowledge of family or friends of veterans who are missing medals from their service to contact the Department of Financial Services or go to www.fltreasurehunt.gov.
Names of medal owners identified in Operation Return the Valor
• Earl R. Johnson
• Dina R. Howard
• John Woska
• Richard Anderson
• Charles Conklin
• Jean Glaser
• John J. Koss
• Leah Eddington
• Martha G. Perfetti
• Richard Stephens
• Virgil Rice