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US Korean War veteran hoping to reunite with S. Korean fellow soldier

James Lantz, a US Marine veteran who served in the 1950-53 Korean War, poses for a photo with a South Korean flag received from a Korean Marine, in this photo released by the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs on Tuesday. (Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs)
James Lantz, a US Marine veteran who served in the 1950-53 Korean War, poses for a photo with a South Korean flag received from a Korean Marine, in this photo released by the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs on Tuesday. (Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs)

A US veteran of the Korean War is hoping to find his long-lost South Korean fellow who fought together during the 1950-53 conflict and gave him an unforgettable gift: a Korean national flag, Seoul's veterans affairs ministry said Tuesday.

Upon the request by James Lantz, the 90-year-old veteran, the ministry launched a campaign to find the Korean Marine that he met in Daegu, 302 kilometers south of Seoul, in 1951. He does not remember the Marine's name.

Lantz made the request in April when South Korea's consulate general in Los Angeles conferred the Ambassador for Peace Medal on him for his dedication to defending South Korea during the conflict.

Lantz said the Korean fellow gave him the flag when he was transferring to a new site of responsibility following a two-week stay in Daegu. He still remembers the Korean man's "kind face" and good command of English, according to the ministry.

"That was 71 years ago, and if he was 20 years old, he'd be 91 years (old). Hopefully, he's still alive," Lantz said in a video message released by the ministry. "Too bad I didn't give him an American flag." (Yonhap)

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