Today, with the help of Monroe County Veterans Affairs, Key West resident and Army Veteran Alvin Alce was formally issued a Purple Heart for wounds incurred as a direct result of enemy action while serving in Vietnam 53 years ago. Alce was one of 372 Americans wounded in the Battle For Hamburger Hill when he was hit several times by enemy small arms fire. He was joined by high-ranking military officials, county officials, and many of his family and friends at a packed house at Harvey Government Center in Key West.
In December 2019, Monroe County Veterans Affairs discovered Alce was never formally issued the Purple Heart for the wounds he suffered during combat in Vietnam. Monroe County Veterans Affairs petitioned the Department of the Army to formally correct his official military personnel record, which is now complete.
The Purple Heart is one of the most recognizable awards for military merit and wounds received in action. It is an award for those who bravely pay the high price of sacrifice for the freedom of Americans.
ALVIN ALCE’S BIO
Alce was born Dec. 17, 1949, in Key West and was drafted into the U.S. Army in August 1968. He was honorably discharged on Aug. 1, 1970. His decorations include the Vietnam Service Medal with three bronze service stars, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation with Palm Device, and now a Purple Heart for his dedicated service to the United States. He served in the 3rd Battalion, 1st Infantry, Americal Division, and the 101st Airborne Division.