Charlotte WWII sailor comes home nearly 80 years later

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Posthumous Medal of Honor recipient Ensign Francis Charles Flaherty is to be buried on Aug. 21, 2021, after being accounted for in 2019, almost 78 years after his death.

A release from the Navy Personnel Command details Flaherty’s act of heroism on the USS Oklahoma on Dec. 7, 1941, where he stayed aboard in a gun turret, holding a flashlight for others to be able to see and escape.

Flaherty was honored with multiple medals posthumously, and the USS Flaherty (1943-1966) was named in honor of the fallen Ensign.

The following awards and decorations were given to Flaherty:

  • Medal of Honor
  • Purple Heart Medal
  • Combat Action Ribbon
  • American Defense Service Medal (Fleet Clasp)
  • Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (Bronze Star)
  • World War II Victory Medal

Ensign Flaherty is survived by his family who lives out of Toas, New Mexico.

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