WEST MILFORD, N.J. — Today, Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) surprised West Milford veteran Calvin Wagner by delivering his missing service medals to his New Jersey home. After learning that Mr. Wagner never received his medals, his daughter Gloria reached out to Congressman Gottheimer’s office and requested assistance. Gloria organized the surprise for her father in coordination with Congressman Gottheimer’s office.
Calvin Wager, 91, served in the Navy as a storekeeper during World War II and had four brothers who also enlisted. Calvin and his wife Anna have been married for 70 years and have two daughters, Gloria and Cynthia. Calvin worked at the NYC Department of Sanitation before retiring and moving to West Milford, New Jersey.
“I’m honored to take care of a Jersey veteran and hero, Calvin Wagner, who served our country nobly in the Navy during World War II and who represents the fight for real American values. It thrilled me to be able to deliver him the service medals that he never received, and I encourage other veterans and their families to contact my office for assistance,” said Congressman Gottheimer.
“I felt like Dad deserved it. You know, he’s a humble guy. He never wants for anything. All he cares about is his family. He worked hard all his life. When he showed me his discharge papers, I noticed there were medals and I said ‘Dad, where are your medals’? and he said ‘Oh I never got them.’” said Gloria Wagner, daughter of Calvin. “I appreciated all of this. I never expected any of this. After all of these years, this is really something special.”
Below: Congressman Gottheimer (NJ-5) surprises veteran Calvin Wagner with his service medals.
Below: Congressman Gottheimer (NJ-5) and veteran Calvin Wagner pose with the Wagners:
Back Row (Left to Right): Congressman Gottheimer; Cynthia Walsh, daughter; Lauren Hallahan, granddaughter; Glen Walsh, grandson.
Middle Row (Left to Right): Bianna Hallahan, great-granddaughter; Gloria Wagner, daughter.
Front Row (Left to Right): Anna Wagner, wife; Shannon Walsh, great-granddaughter; Calvin Wagner; Kaylee Hallahan, great-granddaughter.
If you know of any New Jersey veterans missing service medals or in need of assistance with the VA or help with a claim, please contact Congressman Gottheimer’s office by phone at (973) 814-4078 or or (201) 389-1100 or online at Gottheimer.House.Gov.
Wagner received the following medals:
American Campaign Medal: Awarded for service within the American Theater between December 7th, 1941 and March 2nd, 1946 under any of the following conditions:
1. On permanent assignment outside the continental limits of the United States.
2. Permanently assigned as a member of a crew of a vessel sailing ocean waters for a period of 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days.
3. Outside the continental limits of the United States in a passenger status or on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days.
4. In active combat against the enemy and was awarded a combat decoration or furnished a certificate by the commanding general of a corps, higher unit, or independent force that the Soldier participated in combat.
5. Within the continental limits of the United States for an aggregate period of 1 year.
Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal: Awarded to any member of the United States Armed Forces who served in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater from 1941 to 1945.
European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal: Awarded to recognize those military service members who had performed military duty in the European Theater (to include North Africa and the Middle East) during the years of the Second World War.
World War II Victory Medal: Awarded to any member of the United States military who served on active duty, or as a reservist, between December 7th, 1941 and December 31st, 1946
Occupation Service Medal: Awarded to commemorate the services of Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard personnel in the occupation of certain territories of the enemies of the U.S. during World War II and recognized those personnel who participated in the European and Asian occupation forces.