Spearfish man receives prestigious Bob Hanson Award

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RAPID CITY, S.D. -

A Spearfish veteran received a major award at the Buffalo Chip on Thursday night. 

Wayne Mundt spends most of his days hunting, riding his Harley Davidson and enjoying company in his house overlooking the Black Hills.

At just 26-years-old, Mundt was married and had a child. He was then drafted into the Vietnem War as a field medic with the 101st Airborne Division.

Behind his weathered visage is a man who's seen his share of trauma.

"No one knows until when they're in combat what that feels like," said Mundt. "A lot of thoughts go through your mind about the people back home, your buddies, you're looking out for. Not only yourself, you have to have their interest in mind as well."

He was wounded three times in the field by shrapnel, but that didn't stop him from helping his comrades.

Now Mundt is receiving the 2018 Bob Hanson Distinguished Service Award at the Buffalo Chip for his role in saving countless lives.

"A medic is called upon when somebody else needs them," said Mundt. "Otherwise you can kind of hide in the shadows. Until you're called upon, that's the case. The few times I was called upon, I apparently did my job pretty well."

A number of distinguished veterans have received the award like Senator John McCain and Colonel Steven Ritchie. In addition to the Bob Hanson award, he's also received the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, and the Silver Star.

"It's an honor to serve in the military. It was an honor, and I still consider it an honor."

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