Soldier’s Belongings Returned To Family 10 Years After His Death

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WALDRON (KFSM) -- A Waldron family feels like a part of their soldier who was killed 10 years ago in Iraq has come home.

Justin English set off to serve his country overseas in 2008. His mother, Arlene English received a knock on her door only weeks after he left.

"The company he was working for sent a man and a woman to our door that night about 8:30 p.m. They were in a convoy headed to the base he was going to and it was hit by a bomb. He and three other people were killed," Arlene said.

The town of Waldron held a funeral ceremony fit for a hero.

"It was tough. It brought us together. We relied on our community and family and friends. We just had an amazing outpouring from the Waldron town," Arlene said.

His family received a gift Tuesday, 10 years after his death. Tyler Crakes, a U.S. Marine in Maryland, was tasked with cleaning out a warehouse and throwing away items that didn't belong. While he was cleaning, he came across something that belonged to Justin.

"He found this box that had this flag, this certificate and in it a letter addressed to me and my husband and pictures of them raising and lowering the flag in Justin's honor on the day he was killed over there," Arlene said.

The English family said Tyler worked tirelessly to track them down and with the help of a friend, the items were driven back to Justin's family in Arkansas.

"It's awesome to get this stuff after 10 years," Arlene said. "So unexpected and so surprising that I almost didn't believe it at first because it had been so long."

Arlene said they can't thank Tyler enough for preserving a piece of their loved one's history.

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