Sailor who died at Pearl Harbor returned to North Dakota

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FESSEDEN, ND - On December 7th, 1941, North Dakota native Arnold Neuenschwander was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was docked at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor.

The ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft and the USS Oklahoma quickly capsized.

The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Neuenschwander.

Now, 75 years later, he is back in his hometown.

A somber scene in small town Fessenden, North Dakota as shots rang out honoring one of its own.
For the last 75 years, 1st Class Arthur C. Neuenschwander laid at rest in a Hawaiian cemetery, but now he's back where he belongs.

"My first reaction was, wow...World War II, that was a long time ago. For me to be apart of it and touch that moment in history and have that kinship as a sailor, I can't imagine a better honor" says Navy Commander Scott Bartarm.

An honor that stands at the top of the pedestal

"The most important thing that we do, the most important mission that we have is to make sure the family's and the people that passed away are honored the way they're supposed to be" says Bartarm.

Sailors folded the American flag in its traditional 13 folds and presented to his nephew and surrounding family members.

"When we bring back somebody that's KIA, died at his battle station, it's just a great honor to support that person. That's what I felt when the flag came to me. This is our country. We need to teach our younger people the importance of this" says Nephew, Ross Johnson.

That's the reason why this mother of two came to pay their respects.

"Just so they know our past. We've really been studying our history this year about the United States. I wanted them to see that this is just not something happened in the past but it effects people that are from this area" says Wells County Resident, Amy Ongstad.

Of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, more than 400,000 died during the war.

Currently there are 73,054 service members still unaccounted for from World War II.