The late Brown University Art Professor Walter Feldman was awarded the Bronze Star, posthumously, in a ceremony Monday in the Providence office of Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse.
Feldman died this past May, at the age of 92, remembered as a world-class artist and beloved art teacher at Brown, and a WWII veteran of the Battle of the Bulge, who was awarded a Purple Heart and the Combat Infantry Badge.
What neither Feldman nor his family knew was that he was eligible for the Bronze Star. A family friend informed them of that this past summer.
“That was the first that we had heard of it, and the first that my great-uncle Walter had heard of it, so I helped him apply,” said Sonja Shield, Feldman’s great niece.
According to Shield, after a long search through the 70-year-old, fire-damaged records, and with the help of Whitehouse’s office, the award was finally made, to widow Barbara Feldman, with family members looking on.
"It was beautiful," Shield described. "A number of folks from my family were there, and my great aunt Barbara, was there in the front row, and I think it was very, very moving for her, and for the rest of my family seeing Walter honored in this way."
Shield said it’s sad Feldman didn’t live to see it, but she said at least he knew it was coming.