TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — The remains of a soldier who died in the Korean War have finally been returned to his family. More than 70 years after his death, Sgt. Frank Vejar was laid to rest on Wednesday, in his hometown of Douglas. Vejar was born in 1931 and enlisted in the army at the age of 16. A few years later he went to North Korea to fight in the Korean War. It was around that time that he went missing in action.
“I remember when my mother got the news that he was missing in action, I was standing next to my mom at the door,” said Anita Rose, the sister of Sgt. Frank Vejar.
Vejar was declared dead in the 1950s, but his body had not been found. He was one of more than 7,000 soldiers who remained unaccounted for in the War. Most of Vejar’s living family was too young to remember him or to have met him.
“There’s so little information about him within the family," said Richard Olivas, the nephew of Sgt. Frank Vejar's. "My grandmother really didn’t want to talk about Frank.”
But he was never forgotten. Vejar’s nephew spent 10 years searching for answers. A few months ago, he received a call from the Department of Defense saying that they had found and identified Vejar’s remains.
“I was overwhelmed because as much as I prayed and hoped for this," Olivas said. "I knew that it would take a miracle for him to come home.”
On Wednesday, the family finally laid him to rest next to the graves of his father and mother in Douglas.
“It's a beautiful memory," Rose said. "What an honor to have a brother like that, a brother who fought for our freedom.”
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