August 14-- Nearly 69 years after he was killed in the Korean War, the remains of Toombs County native, Corporal William Silas Smith, will be returned home this week.
Vidalia Funeral Director Ron Hall says Corporal Smith's remains are being flown by the U.S. Army from Honolulu to Savannah where they will be picked up and brought to Vidalia Thursday.
Corporal Smith will be escorted by motorcyclists from "The Patriot Guards," the Georgia State Patrol and the Toombs County Sheriff's Office.
For citizens who wish to pay homage to Corporal Smith, the entourage will travel through Lyons on U.S. Highway 280, take a right turn at Meadows Regional Medical Center in Vidalia and then a left turn on Highway 292 and travel west to the Ronald V. Hall Funeral Home.
Hall says time of arrival in Vidalia is dependent on when the plane from Hawaii arrives in Savannah. He estimates the arrival in Vidalia will occur between 12:45 and 1:30 p.m. Thursday. His funeral will be held Saturday morning at 11 o'clock at Pinecrest Cemetery.
Corporal Smith was reported missing in action in South Korea on September 1, 1950 and declared deceased by the U.S. Army on December 31, 1953.
His only living relative, Robert Manders of Toombs County, was notified in June by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency that his uncle remains had been recovered and positively identified. More than 7,000 service members are still unaccounted for in the Korean War.