COMSTOCK PARK, Mich. -- Dozens of people filled a West Michigan American Legion Post to celebrate an Army veteran that received the Purple Heart award from the military on Sunday.
Ed Hood of Comstock Park is the Army veteran who served in the Vietnam war that received the Purple Heart Sunday. The Purple Heart is a military decoration reserved for those either wounded or killed in action.
"Every day was a nightmare. Every day you were getting fired upon, shot at," said Hood.
Hood was wounded diving into a bunker while under attack.
“I had 17 stitches in my head and a concussion, it knocked me out cold.”
Hood said while it's an honor to receive the award, he believes the real heroes are the people who didn't come home from war.
“Even though he doesn’t consider himself a hero, he sure is," said Hood's grandson 12-year-old Easton Hood.
Easton said he's thankful his grandfather's story is being shared, honoring his bravery and courage.
"After he got the stitches in his head, he still went into war even more," said Easton. “Even in some of the pictures back there, all his eyes are blacked, black and blue eyes, and stitches right in his head.”
Hood's nephew Daniel W. Bartlett Jr., who served in the Air Force, made sure his uncle was recognized for his service. He helped get the necessary records together to make the ceremony possible.
"The things he’s accomplished in his life and done for others, the list is too long to even begin to mention," said Bartlett Jr. "You understand why the crowd is here, because for 50 years he has been part of this town, leading this town, in development activities and in the school, and that’s why it’s even more sweet.”
Hood said he was overwhelmed with the number of people who came to see him receive the Purple Heart. “Did I want the award? Yes. I didn’t necessarily want this (gathering), and the reason I agreed to it is I hope it helps another veteran down the road.”