Funeral set for Port Clinton Ohio National Guard soldier killed in WWII

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John Kovach Jr. (Photo: via embeddable video)

PORT CLINTON, Ohio — An Ohio National Guard soldier whose remains went missing for 75 years after he died in World War II’s Bataan Death March will be buried in his home state.

The Ohio Adjutant General’s Department says Technician 4th Grade John Kovach Jr. will be buried with full military honors Monday in his hometown of Port Clinton in northern Ohio.

The Adjutant General’s Department says Kovach died during the brutal march in the Philippines in 1942. He was buried in a camp cemetery and was later moved to a mass grave. The U.S. Army exhumed remains from the grave in 2014 and identified Kovach through DNA testing.

Kovach enlisted with the National Guard’s 37th Tank Company in Port Clinton in 1940. He fought at Luzon and Bataan before being captured.