Joseph Ford Sr. remembers vividly the day he received the news that his son, Marine Lance Corporal Michael Ford was killed by an IED in Iraq in April of 2006, "When they came to my door at 12:30 in the morning, they didn't even have to tell me he was killed, I knew right away."
A purple heart was awarded to Ford's family after his death only to be stolen just two weeks ago from their New Bedford home. This robbery prompted US Representative Bill Keating and his staff to jump to action to make sure the purple heart was replace. Rep. Keating said, "they can never take away Michael's memory, they can never take away what he did for his country."
At an emotional ceremony Friday morning, Joseph Ford received to new purple heart. He said, "I appreciate all that's been done for me and my family over this tragic incident." The medal represents what the Memorial Day holiday really means. Ford goes on, "Like a lot of people, I'm sure they used to take Memorial Day for granted, another day off, a paid holiday off, it didn't have any meaning to me. It does now, and I have a great appreciation for the people who have served."
The Ford family was also presented with a coin and letter from Charlie Company, the group Ford served with. The letter said that Ford would always be one of their brothers.