Hundreds pay final respects to WWII veterans whose remains were left unclaimed

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. (WSB/Cox/CNN) - Hundreds of people in Georgia have paid their respects to a group of seven military vets who never received a proper goodbye.

They passed away in the decades after World War II but did not have the military burial they deserved until Tuesday. (Source: WSB/Cox/CNN)

The veterans passed away in the decades after World War II but didn’t have the military burials they deserved because no living relatives could be found. So their remains had been kept at funeral homes all across the state.

Along a highway in Woodstock on Tuesday, Penny Depuy brought her children out to see the funeral procession.

“They wrote 50 letters to veterans who are shut-ins recently. So this continues on what we’re supposed to do for our country as Americans,” she said.

“Just the fact that they had been temporarily forgotten, now we’re going to bring them back to the cemetery where people can see their graves, where people will remember,” said Mike Wilds, a U.S. Navy veteran.

At Georgia National Cemetery, a service was held to honor them.

The state chapter of the Missing in America Project organized this gathering, so the men could finally be laid to rest next to their comrades.

Back along the highway, those who gathered along the funeral procession route said it was the least they could do.

“It is very sad. But our country is one big family. So we’re here to support where we can,” Depuy said.

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