South Buffalo resident Eugene “Bob” Pernatt received a Purple Heart from Rep. Brian Higgins, D-Buffalo, on Friday. Pernatt served in the Army during the Korean War. Higgins also presented him with five other awards, including the National Defense Service Medal.
Pernatt, who enlisted in the Army in 1949, served in the Korean War as part of the prestigious 3rd Infantry Division. On April 19, 1951, he was shot in both of his legs. He penned a letter to his parents in which he informed them he was “slightly wounded.” He later rehabbed for seven months at the Walter Reed Hospital in Bethesda, Md.
Pernatt was discharged in 1954, and he returned home to Buffalo, where he worked for National Fuel. He and his wife, May, had two sons, Wesley and Robert.
Pernatt’s brother, George, nominated him for the award and submitted the required application documents. The Purple Heart is given to soldiers who suffer injuries or death due to hostile actions while serving in the armed forces.