Families of war veterans continue search for closure

More than 250 families gathered near ABIA on Saturday to continue a search for loved ones lost in foreign wars dating back over 70 years.

The Defense Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Accounting Agency spent most of the day collecting information to help families track down veterans. Families were also able to submit DNA to help locate one of the 80,000 plus service men and women still unaccounted for.

"My father left for Korea when I was two years old. That's my only memory of him," Sissy Jones said. "It was the day he left and he put his hand on my head and said 'Don't you cut your hair until I get home."

Sissy Johnson didn't for the next seven years. She and her mother were left hoping for his safe return from the Korean War.

"(My mother) would say her rosary and cry herself to sleep every night." Johnson said. "I never told her that I would wake up and hear her cry."

Sissy's family is one of over 250 in Texas still looking for closure.The federal government is trying to help them.

"This is important to the families for obvious reasons but it's important to the defense department, and to the nation as a whole, because we have this ethos that we never leave a person behind," Mike Fowler, spokesman for the DPAA, said. "It's a wonderful feeling whenever you can attend a funeral of someone who was missing for 50, 60, 70 years."

Denise Cable's family will finally have the chance to say goodbye to her uncle. His remains were identified earlier this month. More than 70 years after he died during World War II.

"It takes a lot of weight off because I see mother's face and it's something that she never thought would happen." Cable said. "Just so many things are going through her right now."

While Sissy Johnson may someday have the chance to find closure.

"It's sad that my mother and my brother both past on assuming that he was dead. But maybe it was for the better."

If you would like to help or find out more on how to locate a veteran lost in the Vietnam War, Cold War, Korean War, Desert Storm, or World War II you can go to dpaa.mil.

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