Family to receive WWII soldier's lost Purple Heart

August 5, 2011 - 1:29 PM

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A Vermont Army National Guard officer wounded in Afghanistan will return a lost Purple Heart to the family of an upstate New York soldier killed during World War II.

Capt. Zachariah Fike will present Pvt. Corrado Piccoli's Purple Heart and other medals to his four surviving siblings during a ceremony Sunday in Watertown, Piccoli's hometown, which is 140 miles northwest of Albany.

Fike received Piccoli's Purple Heart in 2009 as a Christmas gift from his mother, who bought it at an antique store. The dead soldier's name was engraved on the back of the medal, which eventually led Fike to Piccoli's sister.

The Italian-born Piccoli enlisted in the Army in 1943 and was killed in action the next year in France. His body was returned for burial in Watertown in 1948.