France has always been in Herman Sitrick's heart, but now pinned close to it is a symbol of the nation's gratitude.
"I really don't think of anything that I did as being particularly heroic," Sitrick said.
But the Legion D'Honneur, or Legion of Honor, celebrates the rarest acts of bravery.
As a teenager, Stirick was wounded after landing on the beaches of Normandy after D Day. Shrapnel pierced his leg. He could have gone home, but didn't. Instead, he fought in the Battle of the Bulge, in some of the war's most brutal conditions.
On a frigid night in the Ardennes Forest of Belgium, Sitrick managed to disarm and capture 21 German soldiers, one by one, all by himself. He detained them in a farmhouse until reinforcements arrived.
"Capturing 21 German prisoners at about 19 years old by yourself is not a small undertaking," said retired Lieutenant General H Steven Blum, U.S. Army.
But since then, Sitrick has rarely spoken about that night. The now-92-year-old great-grandfather said his heart simply answered the cal.
"I never felt like a hero. I was there and I had to do what had to be done," Sitrick said.