WWII hero's lost Purple Heart being returned to his family

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NEW YORK (AP) - A lost Purple Heart medal is being returned to the family of a New York City sailor who died trying to rescue shipmates after his Navy vessel was attacked by a German submarine during World War II.

Ensign Rubin Keltch's medal will be given to his niece during a ceremony being held Friday at a Bronx park named for him.

The Vermont-based group Purple Hearts Reunited says a Vermont man found the medal in his father's collection of flea market purchases.

Keltch, a 24-year-old Brooklyn native, was aboard a Navy gunboat when it was hit by a torpedo off the Virginia coast in 1943. He helped save several shipmates but died when he entered the engine room to save others.

Keltch was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross, the military's second-highest decoration for bravery.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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