WHITESVILLE, Ky. (WEHT) — Private First Class Robert Wright who served his country by way of the United States Army arrived home on Tuesday after going missing in action during the Korean War on July 16th, 1950.
Family and friends and the community all lined the streets in Whitesville, KY to help welcome home.
His niece Jessie Hettinger says this is a moment the family has been waiting on for what seemed like an eternity.
“I am so glad that he finally got to come home in my lifetime,” Hettinger said. “My grandmother and all of his brothers and sisters passed away not knowing where he’s at or what happened.”
His body was escorted to the Cecil Funeral Home by Kentucky State Police and members of the Rolling Thunder.
“72 years the family has waited for answers, closure,” explained Todd Matonich, Rolling Thunder Kentucky chapter 5 president. “For us to be here, it’s very humbling but it’s a very honoring show of respect. the feelings and emotions are indescribable at times.”
With so many people in the community also coming out to show their support Whutesville Mayor Patsy Mayfield says it is a testament of how much the commmunity is truly there for each other and treats each other like family.
“The city of Whitesville is so proud and honored to bring Robert Wright home again,” Mayor Patsy said. “Everyone in this community has been touched. I’m just really happy they were able to find him and bring him back home,” she added.
For Private Wright’s family, finally being able to bring him some was something they’ve been wanting to do all their lives. When she was notified that they had found her uncle Hettinger said she still couldn’t believe it.
“I told them are you sure it’s Wright,” Hettinger explained. “I said I can’t believe it. Whenever I see his remains coming up that’s when I’ll believe it because it’s been 72 years. It’s been so long.”
There will be a visitation scheduled from 2p.m. to 8 pm at Cecil Funeral Home in Whitesville. At 6pm that day the VFW is holding a final salute, where they play taps followed by veterans, one at a time, walking up to casket and saluting. That service will be open to the public.
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