The remains of an Iowan who died in Korea more than 60-years ago will finally be laid to rest in his home state this week. Twenty-four-year old Sergeant First Class Wallace LeRoy Slight of Stuart was killed in action in November, of 1950, but his remains were not found until 1993. The remains were not officially identified until last month. Craig Twigg, with the Twigg Funeral Home in Guthrie Center, says Slight was killed in action near Unsan, North Korea on November second, 1950.
Twigg says his squadron’s convoy was ambushed and the men were buried in a mass grave, and that’s where Slight’s remains were found. Twigg says Slight’s brother, Dean Porter, was contacted this year and asked to provide a blood sample for D-N-A testing. He says it took about a month and there was a positive identification of the bones.
The D-N-A match on October 14th of this year, confirmed the previously unidentified remains of Sergeant Slight were among those buried in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, known as “The Punchbowl,” in Hawaii. Twigg says when Porter called to make the funeral arrangements for his brother, he was obviously proud of his service to the country.
Twigg says his brother wanted everyone to know about his brother’s service and so that everyone knows about the sacrifices made by soldiers and how thankful we should be for them.
A funeral will be held for Sergeant First Class Wallace Slight at Mt Vernon United Methodist Church in Stuart, at Noon, on Friday, December 3rd, with burial at the Iowa Veteran’s Cemetery just south of Interstate 80, near Adel. Dean Porter will escort the casket home from Hawaii prior to the funeral.
According to records provided by the Korean War Project, Slight was a member of Company M, Third Battalion, Eighth Cavalry Regiment, First Cavalry Division. For more information on Korean War Veterans declared MIA or KIA, log on to: www.koreanwar.org.
By Ric Hanson, KJAN Atlantic