Remains of Southern Ill. solider laid to rest 70 years after declared missing in action

Fallen soldier laid to rest after 70 years

MOUND CITY, Ill. (KFVS) - Nearly 70 years after being declared missing in action, the life of a Korean War soldier was celebrated in Southern Illinois.

Despite the ongoing pandemic, family, friends, and members of the military gathered at Mound City National Cemetery to salute Cpl. William Brown on Monday, Aug. 17, 2020.

“It’s a celebration, my brother is going to be laid at rest on home ground,” Clarice Burchell said, Brown’s little sister.

In 1950, Brown enlisted into the Army.

He served eight months before being declared Missing in Action during one of the bloodiest fights of the Korean War, the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir.

Brown’s remains returned home following the summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un in June 2018, when North Korea turned over 55 boxes, purported to contain the remains of American service members killed during the Korean War.

In August of 2018, scientists with the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System identified his remains from a single leg bone.

“What a tremendous joy and honor we have today at long last to honorably lay to rest this man who made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedoms we hold so dear,” the army general said in the service.

The service brings closure to the family who long doubted this day would ever come.

“As you look around and you see all of these maybe thousands of tombs, it just touches your heart,” Burchell said.

CLICK HERE to read more about the life of Cpl. William Brown.

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