INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A World War II veteran’s remains returned to Indianapolis on Thursday. Army Private First Class Marvin Dickson arrived on Delta Flight 2281 from Atlanta around 6 p.m.
The 19-year-old was killed in action while in Germany during the early morning hours of November 13, 1944. He was identified September 27, 2018, according to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA).
Dozens gathered on the tarmac for the welcome home, 75 years after a fight that took the life of the highly decorated Veteran.
“As a soldier, it means a lot because it lets us know that we’ll always make it home and that we haven’t been forgotten,” said Casualty Assistant Officer, Sgt. First Class Joseph Major.
Sgt. Major and other soldiers were not only there to pay tribute but to console the family, who stood next to Delta Flight 2281 overwhelmed with emotion, in a moment they’ve long waited for.
“A lot of times dealing with these particular cases some of the family members may have already passed away. And so when we have the family members that are still living It’s nice to bring that closure to them,” said Rachel Gardner, Indiana National guard Assistance Coordinator.
It’s also closure for a family friend, Marvin Shroeder, who grew up on Span Ave. next-door to the Dickson family. He was born in 1948 and named after Marvin out of sacrifice to our country.
“After that time, his mother cried and was so distraught about the entire circumstance. And I didn’t have a name at the time and so my mom asked my dad if we could name him Marvin,” Shroeder said.
And as a veteran, he knows the sacrifices first hand.
“It’s very important because if you’ve ever been in the military you know the time and the things that can happen in wartime,” Schroeder said.
Those times now bound him to a wheelchair. But he still found a way to pay one final respect to a soldier who has earned a Purple Heart, a Bronze Star, a Combat Infantry Badge, and the man who bears the same name.
“It was always a job well done…and sometimes hopefully you can come home to a job well done….Marvin did today,” Schroeder.
The Patriot Guard Riders led a procession with one final salute to Dickson’s resting place.
Dickson will be buried on Saturday, June 8 at the Shannondale Cemetery in Montgomery County. Services will be provided by the Hunt and Son Funeral home in Crawfordsville.