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Mannington Welcomes Home Fallen Hero From World War II
Written by Phyllis Smith
Last updated on July 22, 2013 @ 6:58PM
Created on July 21, 2013 @ 5:20PM

After 69 years, one American who paid the ultimate price during World War II came home to his final resting place.

While family members said they're relieved his remains are back in Manningtown, it's still a bittersweet feeling.

Eva Hinerman, Jerome's sister, said, "At least we'll all be together, in the United States, which we thought would never happen, but it did. I'm thankful, but I'm sad."

There was all sorts of local support for the fallen hero Sunday afternoon. Kiger's family was even presented with the Purple Heart for Kiger.

Jack Cople, who attended the funeral in support of Jerome, said, "You don't see something like this that often. It's nice that they have something for a returning brother, from anywhere."

Even the man who discovered Kiger's remains in Germany was there.

Markus Mooser, the man who discovered Jerome's remains in Germany, said, "Jerome took me here, and I had to bring him back home. It's also important that I brought back one man, one American hero, home to his family."

One military member said it means not only a lot to the people of Mannington, but to the entire state as well.

Sergeant John Oliverio said, "I think it's wonderful, not only for the people that are family, the people of Mannington, the people of Marion County, state of West Virginia, and the United States to show that we truly leave no solider behind."

Governor Early Ray Tomblin has declared July 21st as Jerome Kiger Day in West Virginia.

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