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Cpl. Story’s remains were delivered to his bereaved family

Cpl. Story’s remains were delivered to his bereaved family

Posted April. 28, 2023 08:14,   

Updated April. 28, 2023 08:14


At the Wall of Remembrance in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, Minister of Patriots and Veterans Affairs Park Min-shik presented dirt from the area where the remains of U.S. Army Cpl. Luther H. Story, who was killed during the Korean War and missing for 73 years, to his bereaved family.

The event was organized with President Yoon Suk Yeol’s state visit serving as a momentum, where President Yoon and President Joe Biden delivered a joint statement on the identification of the Medal of Honor recipient from the Korean War.

Cpl. Story was killed in the Battle of the Naktong River against the North Korean People’s Army on Sept. 1, 1950, while remaining to cover the company's withdrawal. Story was awarded the nation’s highest award, the Medal of Honor, in 1951 for his heroic actions that day. However, Story’s remains were not located or identified for over 70 years until April 6, 2023, when the U.S. Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) confirmed that one of the unidentified remains exhumed in South Korea in the past during the inspection was identified as Cpl. Story. Minister Park handed over a paulownia box, covered with the Korean national flag, which contains soil from Changnyeong, South Gyeongsang Province, where Story’s remains were found, and a photo frame of the deceased, restored with artificial intelligence (AI) technology, to the bereaved family.

“I was so happy to finally see my uncle’s remains after more than 70 years, and I am grateful that the U.S. and South Korean presidents were there to comfort us,” said Mrs. Judy Wade, a survived niece of Cpl. Story. “I was also moved to receive the soil from the area where his remains were found.”

A graveside service will be held at Anderson National Cemetery in Georgia on May 29, a day after the Memorial Day holiday. The South Korean Veterans Affairs Ministry will present a telegram of condolence and wreaths.

Sang-Ho Yun ysh1005@donga.com