MIA Korean War veteran laid to rest, 63 years later - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

MIA Korean War veteran laid to rest, 63 years later

The remains of Pfc. Jerry Pat Craig were finally buried in a graveside burial at the Military Cemetery in Leesville on Thursday. (Gerron Jordan / KPLC) The remains of Pfc. Jerry Pat Craig were finally buried in a graveside burial at the Military Cemetery in Leesville on Thursday. (Gerron Jordan / KPLC)
The remains of Pfc. Jerry Pat Craig were finally buried in a graveside burial at the Military Cemetery in Leesville on Thursday. (Gerron Jordan / KPLC) The remains of Pfc. Jerry Pat Craig were finally buried in a graveside burial at the Military Cemetery in Leesville on Thursday. (Gerron Jordan / KPLC)
LEESVILLE, LA (KPLC) -

The remains of Pfc. Jerry Pat Craig were buried Thursday at the Central Louisiana Military Cemetery in Leesville.

"It's the most joyous occasion I've had in a long, long time," said Craig's niece, Anita Fields-Gold of Lake Charles. "To know he's home, among his comrades and that tells our story."

Leesville Mayor Robert Rose and state representative James Armes spoke during the ceremony.

"I can assure you that none of our veterans, soldiers, sailors, marines who fought in any war are ever forgotten," said Mayor Rose.

"We must never give up hope on any service man who may still be alive somewhere in this world," said State Representative James Armes. 

Craig's remains were escorted by members of the Patriot Guard.

Fort Polk Brigadier General William Hickman was among the dozens who showed up to support Craig's remaining family members.

"To know that they're paying honor to one of ours who has returned... I felt honored that they would know... that they wanted to remember," said Fields-Gold.

Craig was killed in December 1950 fighting in the Korean War. His remains were never identified but were buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, marked as unknown.

His remains were identified through forensic testing this year and his niece, Anita Fields Gold of Lake Charles, accepted the remains.

Thursday would have been Craig's 81st birthday.

Copyright 2013 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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