Fallen soldier of Korean War returns to brother

Fallen soldier of Korean War returns to brother
November 12
00:00 2015

In above photo: Members of the Patriot Guard Riders carry the remains of Army PFC Frank Worley inside Russell Funeral Home on Friday, Nov. 4. Worley was a Korean War Veteran who went missing in 1951. (Photo by Tevin Stinson)

Army PFC Frank Worley was reported missing in action

By Tevin Stinson

The Chronicle

Less than a week before Veteran’s Day, a Korean War veteran was returned home and laid to rest.

Army PFC Frank Worley, an African-American, was buried with full military honors at Salisbury National Cemetery on Friday, Nov. 6.

Worley was a member of A Battery, 503rd Field Artillery Battalion, Second Infantry Division, which is part of Support Force 21.

He was reported missing in action on Feb.12, 1951, after his unit battled Chinese forces near Hoengsong, South Korea.

Years went by before Worley’s remains were found.

Then, in May of 1992, the North Korean government repatriated remains that had been recovered near Namjong-gu, North Korea.

After analysis of some skeletal and dental remains, DNA proved that they had found Worley. DNA also proved that Worley was killed during combat.

The remains were then airlifted to Winston-Salem on Nov. 6, where Frank Worley’s surviving brother Leroy Worley currently resides. Jack Worley of Chula Vista, California, is another surviving brother of the war veteran.

When Russell Funeral home director and general manager Cedric L. Russell got the word that Worley’s remains would be delivered to his establishment, he was at a loss of for words.

“When I first got the news I was amazed,” he continued. “I’m 62 years old and this war happened before I was even born. That in its self was pretty amazing.”

Members of the Patriot Guard Riders (PGR), a motorcycle club of only military veterans, ushered the hearse carrying Worley through the busy streets of the city. The group of veterans got word of PFC Worley’s return home from the casualty assistance officer in Fort Bragg.

The club’s state captain, Rick Rohme, said coming out to honor Worley is the least they could do.

“PFC Worley made the ultimate sacrifice,” he said. “Because of his sacrifice, me and you are free to do what we want today.”

First Class Arin Van Denmark was assigned the duty of escorting Worley back home to the Carolinas. He said it was an honor.

“This is my first time escorting a fallen solider home,” he continued. “When I first got the news, I felt honored that I was chosen to carry out such a important mission.”

Van Denmark is stationed in Hawaii and said he volunteered to be Worley’s personal escort.

“I felt like it was my duty to see that Private First Class Worley made it home to his final resting place safely.”

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