Welcome Home, Walter

We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Hier ruht ein unbekannte allierte Flieger.

Those words — “Here rests an unknown Allied Flier” — were the only words on the decades-old black cross burial marker in the little German church cemetery. Now, the grave has been opened and the flier from World War II is unknown no more.

He was U.S. Army Air Forces Tech. Sgt. Walter Adell McClellan, a Pensacola native who was only 19 years old when his plane was shot down in April 1945.

He was captured, interrogated, tortured and executed the same day. He was buried in a German grave for decades.

…A few months after World War II ended in 1945, townspeople in Burkhardswalde, a town near Dresden, moved McClellan’s remains to a church cemetery and erected the marker to honor the “unknown allied Flier.”

Bless their hearts.

Sleep well, brave boy.

5 Responses to “Welcome Home, Walter”

  1. Mr. Bingley says:

    Oh my gosh. God bless, sweet young man. Thank you, and I’m so glad we now know your name and your loved ones know, however painful, of your fate.

  2. JeffS says:

    Vale, SGT McClellan. Rest in peace.

  3. Teresa says:

    May he rest in peace. The last sentence of that piece made me cry.

  4. tree hugging sister says:

    Tears your heart out, doesn’t it, Teresa? The sister who said that is a sweet, white haired elderly lady in a wheel chair. They’re burying him in the cemetary near us on Friday. She said they could have put him in Arlington…but she wants him “home”.


  5. nightfly says:

    “He was an average boy,” but not in valor. God bless him and his family.

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