Sibley, Iowa — A Sibley soldier who died more than seventy years ago is finally returning home.
According to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA), Army Cpl. Eldert J. Beek was 20-years-old when he was killed during the Korean War. The Sibley native’s remains were accounted for in April, 2020.
According to the DPAA, in late 1950, Beek was a member of Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. He was reported killed in action on Dec. 1, 1950, when his unit was attacked by enemy forces near the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea. Following the battle, his remains could not be recovered.
On July 27, 2018, following the summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un in June 2018, North Korea turned over 55 boxes, purported to contain the remains of American service members killed during the Korean War. The remains arrived at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii on Aug. 1, 2018, and were subsequently accessioned into the DPAA laboratory for identification.
To identify Beek’s remains, scientists from DPAA used anthropological analysis, as well as circumstantial evidence. Additionally, scientists from the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA analysis.
Beek’s name is recorded on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, along with the others who are still missing from the Korean War. Officials say a rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.
Beek will be buried next month in George, according to the DPAA.