One of the saddest and most difficult things that some military servicemen’s families have to endure is the news that their loved one is listed as Missing in Action. Those three words are an added psychological burden to the pain of loss. It is a pain that has no resolution.
The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency is actively working on finding and identifying as many of our military who still remain on the MIA list at present time. When they find remains, as is happening more and more often these days, the POW/MIA Accounting Agency uses sophisticated DNA analysis and other kinds of physical evidence to identify those remains and then repatriate those remains to their families as soon as is possible.
One such set of remains has been recently identified and is being returned to his family.
On Nov. 30, 1950, 68 years ago now, United States Marine Corps Sergeant, Meredith Kiern, was killed in action in what is now N. Korean territory. He was serving with the 1st Marine Division as a light machine gun section leader when he fell to enemy fire. Because of the battle and the conditions, he was buried where he fell and his remains were not able to be recovered when the cease fire was initiated at the end of hostilities in the Korean War.
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In 2015, according to the Marine Corps Times, a South Korean citizen turned over some remains to United States forces in South Korea. Those remains were identified recently as those of Sgt. Kiern. He has finally come home, but funeral arrangements were not available at the time.
The Veterans Site expresses its condolence to the Kiern family. Though he comes home so many decades after his death while serving the nation in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War, we take some comfort and satisfaction that he can now be buried in the soil of his hometown with the rest of his family.
Welcome home, Sgt. Meredith Kiern. You are not forgotten. Semper Fi!
Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site Blog.