Unidentified for decades, Texas soldier receives final rites

HOUSTON (AP) — A Texas soldier who died in the final months of battle in World War II and whose remains were unidentified for decades is being interred at a military cemetery in Houston.

A memorial service was held Wednesday at Houston National Cemetery for Army Pfc. Lonnie Eichelberger, a 20-year-old from Waco who died in heavy fighting with German forces in Italy.

Eichelberger was part of the 92nd Infantry Division, which was the only African-American division to fight in Europe.

He was declared missing after a battle near Strettoia, Italy. Remains recovered near there after the war in Europe ended in 1945 could not be identified and eventually were buried at the American cemetery in Florence, Italy. The remains were disinterred in 2016 and ultimately identified as Eichelberger’s.

- FWBP Digital Partners -

The Army says nearly 73,000 service members from WWII are unaccounted for.