US Marine To Return Home 65 Years After Being Killed In Action D - Erie News Now | WICU & WSEE in Erie, PA

US Marine To Return Home 65 Years After Being Killed In Action During Korean War

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It's the news that a local family has been awaiting, for more than six decades.
65 years after his death, a Marine is finally coming home.

A military family is getting the closure they've been hoping for, more than 6 decades after their loved one was killed in action during the Korean War.

Sgt. John McLaughlin was killed during the battle of The Chosin Reservoir, on December 7th, 1950.

His remains were in a mass grave on the battlefield, until the war ended in 1954.

His remains were some of many Soldiers and Marines, returned to Americans, during an exchange of war dead, with North Korea.

So for 58 years, his remains have been buried as an unknown, at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, in Hawaii.
But just a few years ago, scientists decided to exhume those remains, and use new DNA technology to try and identify the unknowns.

And this week, Hattie Johnson, head of the Marine Corps' POW/MIA section out of Quantico, Virginia, traveled to Canadohta Lake to give the family some long-awaited news.

She came with proof, and many details about how they were able to positively identify the remains as Sgt. John McLaughlin, affectionately known to his family as Johnny, "It's my wife's his brother, he's my brother-in-law. We loved him and missed him, and was hoping all those years that someday we'd be able to put him where he needs to be with his brother," said Joseph DeFilippo.

Lisa DeFilippo never met her Uncle Johnny, but through stories and pictures, she knew him well, "It's amazing that our military has gone through so much to make sure that they can identify my Uncle, and we would know that it's him, and that we have him back to bury him," said DeFilippo.

"I'm happy for the family," said Johnson. "Believe it or not, of over 78,000 American still unaccounted for, there will only be about 30,000 that will come home," Johnson added.

Sgt. Mclaughlin's remains will be escorted home by Marines. He will be buried will full military honors this summer, next to his brother, in Pittsburgh.

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