DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – He was missing in action for 73 years, but now a World War II soldier from Texas is finally home.
It’s been a long time coming for his family. Today funeral services were finally held for Army Private Kenneth Dayle Farris.
Private Farris’s sisters and brothers never stopped looking for him. In fact, they traveled the world searching for his remains.
While emotions were high today, family members told CBS 11 News there is more joy than sadness.
Private Farris, a native of Dodson, Texas, was drafted into World War II when he was 18-years-old. He had gone missing by the time he turned 19.
Wounded in the Battle of Hürtgen Forest, against German forces in 1944, Farris disappeared while on the way to a first aid station.
His youngest sister, Judith Bingham, spent 73 years searching for his remains. She traveled to Germany and interviewed his fellow soldiers, but it wasn’t until this year when she got a phone call.
It turns out Private Farris’ remains had been recovered in 1946 but there was no way to identify them. The remains were held at a cemetery in France until they were finally sent to the Department of Defense for analysis last year.
It was on April 23 when the Army notified Bingham that they had identified the remains, found buried in an unmarked grave in the Netherlands, as those of Private Farris. “I wished so much that he could home. We wanted him home,” Bingham said. “This is his home. In the [Dallas–Fort Worth] National Cemetery he’ll be with other soldiers like himself.”
Three of the young solder’s four living siblings attended his funeral in Dallas today. Another of Farris’ sisters, Betty Droby, wished other loved ones could be there. “I’d just give anything if my mother knew,” she said.
The funeral included a 21-gun salute and Private Farris was interred with full military honors.
The Dallas Police Department Honor Guard and The Patriot Guard Riders escorted Private Farris to his final resting place.
Private Kenneth Dayle Farris have turned 92-years-old today.