World War II veteran finally receives Combat Infantry Medal

Thursday, February 11, 2010
By Joe Domelowicz

Winthrop resident Louis Visco has long been known in the local veterans community.

“Lou is a long-time resident, a super guy and a long serving member of the American Legion,” explained Winthrop Veterans Agent Larry Holmes.

Many people know Visco, and know of his service to the United States during World War II, as an infantryman fighting on the German front.

Visco earned a Purple Heart for injuries suffered in combat during the war, but only recently was Visco properly recognized for his service, when an aide to Senator John F. Kerry helped right a wrong that had stood for more than 60 years.

According to Holmes, Visco had “bumped into” the Kerry aide during a recent event, and when the aide asked Visco if there was anything he could do for him, Visco told him he could help him find out why he was never awarded the Combat Infantry Badge (CIB), he’d earned by fighting in the Infantry in Europe during World War II.

“The aide told him he’d ‘see what he could do for him’,” said Holmes. “Usually, when somebody tells you that you don’t expect to hear from them again, but this time it actually happened.”

The Senatorial staff member, whose name was not available, did some background checking with the Department of Defense and then mailed Visco his overdue medal, along with a Bronze Star, which Holmes said all World War II veterans who qualified for the CIB had also received.

“I’ll tell you I was totally thrilled to pin that medal on him,” said Holmes. “He was delighted as well. Really, was quite a nice time to be able to do that for him.”

Attempts to reach Visco for comment on his long-awaited medal were unsuccessful.

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