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Lubbock VFW honors family of World War II gunner who went MIA in 1941

Updated: May. 8, 2021 at 8:29 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The Veterans of Foreign Wars Lubbock hosted a ceremony on Saturday for the family of a World War II veteran who went missing in action in 1941.

The ceremony took place at the Lubbock VFW building. A Purple Heart medal and U.S. flag were presented to U.S. Army Air Corps Staff Sergeant Harvey Lee Cartrite’s youngest brother, Kent.

VFW commander Benny Guerrero explained what this ceremony meant for the family and for local veterans.

“It means that the community cares. It’s been said that a soldier truly dies when he’s forgotten, and today, we told the family that our promise and vow is never to forget. So it meant the world to them. I can see it in their eyes as each of the elements of our program got better and better, and it climaxed when we gave them, when we presented that shadowbox with the flag and his medals. They’ve been waiting for that for years,” Guerrero said.

Cartrite was a door gunner with the 412th Bombardment Squadron, 95th Bombardment Group operating in Europe.

He was shot down over the Baltic Sea and was identified at missing in action on April 11, 1944.

Because his remains were never recovered, he continues to be listed in the registry in the Defense Personnel Accounting Agency as MIA.

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