CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice ordered United States and West Virginia flags at state-owned properties flown at half-staff on Saturday in honor of a World War II sailor whose remains were recently returned to West Virginia.
Navy Fire Controlman 1st Class Bernard Ramon Wimmer was assigned to the battleship USS Oklahoma at Pearl Harbor. He was aboard when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft, sustaining multiple torpedo hits and quickly capsizing, according to a news release from the governor’s office. The attack resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen including the Princeton native.
Wimmer was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, the WWII Victory Medal and the American Defense Medal for his service. His remains were exhumed from a Honolulu cemetery in 2015 and identified using DNA and other analysis in 2020.
Memorial services celebrating Wimmer’s life were scheduled for Saturday. His only living sibling, Betty Snider, lives in Speedway with her husband.