Remains of sailor killed in Pearl Harbor headed home to Ohio

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SPRINGFIELD, Ohio — The U.S. Navy is flying the remains of a central Ohio man back to his home nearly 75 years after he was killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

William “Billy” Welch of Springfield enlisted in the Navy at 17. He was among the 429 killed aboard the U.S.S. Oklahoma on Dec. 7, 1941.

Welch’s body wasn’t identified following the attack.

The U.S. Department of Defense began testing the remains of those buried in Hawaii for DNA this past year. The Springfield News-Sun reports one grave included a piece of jaw bone that matched Welch.

Family members are planning his funeral. Welch’s youngest sister, Ann Welch Ianni, says a military burial with full honors is planned for September.