Remains of eastern Iowa WWII soldier return home after 77 years

By  | 

BLAIRSTOWN, Iowa (KCRG) - The remains of a Benton County soldier who served in World War II are returning to Iowa after 77 years.

Nearly 77 years after leaving for a patrol in present-day Papua New Guinea during WWII, Pvt. Laurel W. Ebert is returning home to Iowa. (Iowa National Guard)

Private Laurel W. Ebert was 27 when he was last seen on Nov. 26, 1942.

The Blairstown native and 8 others went on patrol in Papua New Guinea. Six of the men, including Private Ebert, failed to return and were listed as Missing in Action.

His remains were found and interred in 1943. In May 2017, his remains were disinterred, with identification happening just this year.

This Friday, there will be a graveside service at Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Blairstown at 10:45 a.m. and will have full military honors.

Ebert's military awards and honors include Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Army Good Conduct Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one Bronze Service Star, World War II Victory Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Combat Infantryman Badge, and Honorable Service Lapel Button-World War II.

The public is welcome.