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Sailor who died in Pearl Harbor attack laid to rest

HANCOCK, Mich. >> A Michigan sailor whose remains were identified nearly 70 years after he died in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor has been laid to rest in his home state.

More than 130 friends and relatives of U.S. Navy Fireman Third Class Gerald G. Lehman filled a Hancock church yesterday for the funeral. Lehman was later buried at Forest Hill Cemetery in Houghton.

Lehman’s nephew, John Herres, called his uncle’s return home for burial “a joyous day.” Herres was six years old when his uncle died at age 18 when Japanese planes sank the USS Oklahoma on Dec. 7, 1941.

His remains had been unidentified, but DNA samples collected from envelopes of letters Lehman sent home recently helped identify his remains.

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