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State

Illinois WWII veteran receives France's highest honor

The Legion of Honor medal
The Legion of Honor medal

DES PLAINES (AP) – A 94-year-old Illinois veteran has received France’s highest medal of honor for his service in World War II.

Xenophon “Fonda” Doudalis was awarded the Legion of Honor medal, the Daily Herald reports. He liberated villages in France as well as a German concentration camp in 1945.

Doudalis joined the war at 19 and says the “dreadful images” of liberating survivors from German occupation continue to “haunt” him.

After the war, Doudalis returned to Des Plaines in suburban Chicago where he worked as a tool-and-die maker. He also founded a Greek Orthodox church in the area. A nonprofit that supports veterans nominated him for the award.

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Information from: Daily Herald, http://www.dailyherald.com

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