ALCOA, Tenn. (WATE) — A Marine veteran from Alcoa who earned a Purple Heart Medal and Presidential Unit Citation for his bravery during the Vietnam war, has died at the age of 72.

Charles Prater was born in Alcoa on Oct. 12, 1949. He joined the Marine Corps in 1968, serving as a rifleman in the USMC with 3rd Battalion, 26th Marines.

The 3rd Battalion, 26th Marines earned a Presidential Unit Citation for their actions during the Battle of Khe Sanh in 1968. Prater also earned a Purple Heart Medal, Navy Unit Citation and other awards during the Vietnam War, according to Blount County Veterans Affairs.

He was wounded in action in 1969 when a helicopter he was on was shot down in the Quang Nam Province. Prater received his Honorable Discharge later that year.

Prater will be laid to rest at the East Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery.

STAY INFORMED: Download: the WATE 6 On Your Side News and Weather Apps