WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - A memorial service on Friday allowed the family of Glenn Tipton as well as total strangers to pay respects to the World War II sailor, almost 77 years after he was killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor.
The event was held at the Wings of Honor Museum in Walnut Ridge to remember Tipton, whose remains were flown back to Northeast Arkansas Wednesday night.
It was a situation that his family never thought would happen, with one family member saying the situation was difficult.
"My sister that got the call first. We never expected this to happen, I mean we knew the DNA was sent in five years ago and mine, three years ago, but I mean never expected anything to come of it," Tipton's half-brother, Ken Tipton, said.
Several area veterans and current military personnel participated in the service to lay Tipton to rest, with several others speaking including people from the governor's office and representatives from other state offices.
Ken Tipton said his family, which traveled from Florida and California to attend the service, had waited for years to find out what happened to Glenn Tipton.
Now, Glenn Tipton is buried in Opposition Cemetery next to his mother.
A 94-year-old World War II veteran who attended the service said he would not have missed the chance to thank Tipton for his service.
"I'm still alive today. If I was in the situation like he was buried in the ocean or a jungle or nature or anything like that, I would be honored to be here in his place," Paul Calkin said.