Unclaimed remains of Madera Veterans laid to rest

A ceremony unlike any other focused on the unclaimed remains of Madera County Veterans Friday.

The five veterans died and were cremated, but after no family claimed them.

The organization Missing in America works to make sure these vets get a proper ceremony.

“These guys basically died alone and they served our country,” says Madera County Board of Supervisors Chairman Rick Farinelli.

If it weren’t for a small group in Madera County, five local veterans may have never been laid to rest.

“They served our country with pride, they need to be able to go out with pride as well,” he says.

The boxes are filled with the remains of five veterans who died over the past year, Friday the VFW Post 1981 hosted their burial ceremony.

“If they are sitting on a shelf somewhere they don’t get a burial,” says Bob Protzman.

When Bob Protzman found out these remains were never claimed he said he and those at VFW Post 1981 in Madera had to do something.

Protzman is also part of the Missing in America organization, he looked into these veterans military history and got to work.

“When I get that confirmation or authorization I let the county know that i will be stepping in as the next of kin and I will be taking posession of the remains,” he says.

He says he knows veterans are being forgotten all around the nation.

“An example, in Shasta County, a funeral home just changed hands and they found over 380 remains there, out of those 150 were veterans,” he adds.

The five fallen veterans are from Madera county, they served in WWII, Korea, and in Vietnam.

After the ceremony in Madera the fallen veterans were escorted to the San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery in Santa Nella where they will rest in peace.

For more information you can head to http://www.miap.us/

http://www.yourcentralvalley.com/news/unclaimed-remains-of-madera-veterans-laid-to-rest

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