Update 3/3/14 – The collection of World War II medals found inside a unit at Aladdin Self Storage in Louisville, Ky., last month have been returned to the son of the veteran who earned them. Tony Grunder contacted the storage facility after watching a local news report about the medals and his father. He lives 10 minutes from the property and had no idea the medals were there.
The collection includes a Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Silver Star. Grunder’s father Anthony served in the Army in Europe and Asia. “My father was a good man,” Tony Grunder said. “He went to be a soldier and remained a soldier until he passed.”
Anthony died of cancer in 1991 at age 67. Tony Grunder believes his stepmother, who died several years ago, may have put the medals in storage but never told anyone where they were. He hadn’t seen the collection in 23 years.
Aladdin managers Stephanie and David Kalbaugh, who found the medals and put them on display in the office while searching for Anthony Grunder’s family have replaced the collection with a photo of the veteran.
2/10/14 – Employees at Aladdin Self Storage in Louisville, Ky., discovered several World War II medals inside a unit used by the company last August and are trying to return the collection to the Army veteran or his family. The collection appears to belong to Anthony Grunder and includes a Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Silver Star.
"The first one that stands out is the Purple Heart," said Stephanie Kalbaugh, facility manager.
"They're real special. That man basically laid his life on the line for our country," added David Kalbaugh, who served in the Air Force and handles maintenance at the facility. "It looks like he spent the whole time in World War II. He started out at one campaign in Europe and then finished up in Asia. He was in the Army with the 101st Airborne or Third Ranger Battalion."
The Kalbaughs have examined old records and conducted research online in trying to find out more about Grunder or his family but have not been able to locate the man or known relatives. If still alive, Grunder would most likely be in his 90s.
They believe the medals may have been stored by previous owners or employees of the facility at 3413 Collins Lane, which was called Toonerville Trunk and Storage beginning in the 1990s. The facility’s current owners purchased the property in 2011, according to the source.
In the interim, the medals are on display inside the manager’s office, and they have resonated with customers, particularly veterans. "They tell stories about them,” Stephanie Kalbaugh said. “It takes them back to a time when they were in the military, and it's really emotional."
Anyone with information regarding Grunder or his family is encouraged to contact Aladdin Self Storage at 502.241.7200 or [email protected].
- Cumberland Times-News: Former Frostburg Resident Returns Purple Heart to Family of WWII Soldier
- Wave3 News: WWII Medals Found in Storage Unit, Couple Working to Return to Owner