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Fallen Soldier, A Hadley-Luzerne Hero
Posted On:
Friday, September 24, 2021
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Earlier this week, Superintendent Baker had the honor of attending fallen soldier Walter Smead’s burial service after his remains were kept in North Korea for nearly 71 years. Not only was it an honor to pay respects to a man who devoted his life protecting our country, but this particular soldier is near and dear to the Hadley-Luzerne community. 


Smead attended Hadley-Luzerne High School in the 1940s and left the area during his Senior year to fight in World War II. Had he had the opportunity, Smead would have graduated from HLHS, Class of 1944. After a year of battle, Smead returned to the area with his family in Corinth, NY. But it wasn’t long before he returned to battle to fight in the Korean War. 


Unfortunately, Smead died on the Korean Peninsula at age 24 in 1950, where his remains were kept until this year. In July 2018, North Korea agreed to release the remains of US troops killed during the war and send these troops back to America, where we can finally lay these fallen soldiers to rest. 

During the funeral services, Superintendent Baker spoke to Smeads family and presented a plaque (below) that will hang in the halls of our High School in honor of Douglas Smead. The district plans to continue communications with his family and will be working on ways to further commemorate this local war hero.