FRANKFORT, Ky. (August 28, 2020) – Gov. Andy Beshear ordered flags to half-staff at all state buildings from sunrise to sunset on Saturday, Aug. 29, in honor of a Corbin soldier who died in the Korean War, but whose remains were only recently identified.
“We are all glad to have our Kentucky soldier home again, and closure for his family,” said Gov. Beshear. “Lowering the flag to honor his service and sacrifice is a tangible symbol of our respect and compassion for all veterans and their families.”
A memorial service for Cpl. Hash will be held at 5:30 p.m. Friday at the Hart Funeral Home in Corbin. The graveside service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Worley Cemetery.
Cpl. Billie Joe Hash, U.S. Army, died during the December 1950 battles near the Chosin Reservoir.
According to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA): “While assigned to Headquarters Battery, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division, Cpl. Hash went missing in action on 6 December 1950, near the Chosin Reservoir, D.P.R.K (North Korea.). American forces did not recover his remains.
Following a joint forensic review involving DPAA personnel and North Korean representatives, 55 boxes of remains were handed over to the DPAA for analysis and possible identification in August 2018.
One of those boxes contained human remains that based on their location and the last known location of Cpl. Hash, allowed DPAA to conclude that they are his remains.
“The date of Corporal HASH’s death was previously established by the U.S. Army as 31 December 1953. Based on the available evidence, the cause of death cannot be determined to a sufficient degree of medical certainty, and is best certified as ‘Undetermined.’ Based on the historical record the manner of death is certified as ‘Undetermined.’ The date of death is more consistent with the date of loss 6 December 1950. If additional remains of Corporal HASH are recovered and identified, disposition of those remains will be in accordance with the wishes of the next of kin.”
All individuals, businesses, organizations, and government agencies are encouraged to join in this tribute of lowering the flag to honor Cpl. Hash. Additional flag status information is available at http://governor.ky.gov/flag-status.