46 years after his death, Wis. Marine comes home

46 years after his death at age 20 in Vietnam, a Wisconsin Marine returns home

Published On: Jun 27 2013 04:00:00 PM CDT   Updated On: Jul 08 2013 09:44:24 AM CDT
military burial

Marine Lance Cpl. Merlin Raye Allen was just 20 when his life ended in Vietnam. Forty-six years later, he's finally back in his beloved Bayfield County of northern Wisconsin.

An enemy rocket brought down the helicopter Allen was in over Hue (way) Province. His remains were not discovered until a joint U.S.-Vietnamese recovery team excavated the wreck site last year.

The Ashland Daily Press reports his sister Marilyn Allen Neff and other relatives were overwhelmed by the welcome when they motored into Washburn on Wednesday from Minneapolis, where the family received the casket holding Allen's remains. They arrived in town with an escort from the Patriot Guard Riders.

Visitation will be Friday at the Bratley Funeral Home in Washburn. His funeral is Saturday at the Bayfield High School gymnasium.