LESLIE COUNTY, Ky (LEX 18) Kentucky’s one-and-only medal of honor recipient in WWI finally made it home today. Thanks to a new state veterans cemetery in Leslie County, Sergeant Willie Sanders and his wife were interred back to the place they called home.
A proper military funeral was held Tuesday. A trumpet mournfully played "Taps" and there was a 21 gun salute. This service for Sergeant Sandlin was not his first burial.
"My Mawmaw passed away and they were both buried at Zachary Taylor Cemetery up in Louisville," said their great-grandson Ronnie Harris.
Louisville was never home for Sergeant Sandlin. Eastern Kentucky is where he grew up and joined the army. It is also where he returned after receiving the Medal of Honor for his action in WWI.
"When he got done with the war, he could’ve went anywhere he wanted to but he came back here," said Harris.
His family knew that he would like to rest in the mountains.
"My great grandmother used to always tell me that there was mountain strength. And this community down here – I really believe is just so strong and they created Willie Sandlin," said Harris.
Thanks to the New Veterans Cemetery, the community that created Sergeant Sandlin saw him come home for good.
"I think this strong community is a great place to have him and it’s where he’d want to be," he said.