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Kansas Delegation Seeks Medal of Honor for Late Priest

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) -- The Kansas congressional delegation is making their case to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta that a late Roman Catholic priest deserves a Medal of Honor for his heroism during the Korean War.

The Reverend Emil Kapaun was serving as an Army Chaplain when he died in an enemy prison camp in May 1951. His sister-in-law, Helen Kapaun, said she was encouraged by Friday's letter from the congressional delegation and hoped the honor would be forthcoming.

Panetta's recommendation to President Barack Obama would be one of the last steps in the process. Kapaun already has the backing of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Kapaun was from the Kansas town of Pilsen. He has been classified as a Servant of God by the Vatican, the first step in the process to sainthood.

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