Decades later, a Minnesota soldier who went missing gets a proper burial

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A Minnesota man who died during the Korean War will finally get a proper burial, with full military honors.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Gordon L. Hannah, of Grand Rapids, Minnesota, is believed to have been captured following a battle with enemy forces near Wonju, South Korea, on Jan. 28, 1951, according to a news release from the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO).

It's believed he died of dysentery in early 1951 at Suan Bean Camp. He was 27.

But his remains were not identified until last month, allowing them to finally be returned to his family. He'll be buried Wednesday at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.

During the three years of the Korean War, 8,177 U.S. servicemen were designated "missing in action," including at least 773 from Minnesota, the Korean War Project says. There are still 7,865 Americans who haven't been accounted for or identified, but modern technology is making it easier for scientists to identify remains of U.S. servicemen.

Scientists used circumstantial evidence, dental and radiograph comparison, and DNA from Hannah's niece, nephew and son to positively identify him among the human remains of over 400 U.S. servicemen. Some of those remains were returned to the U.S. in the early 1990s; others were discovered during an excavation effort in the late 2000s, the release notes.

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