CHARLESTON, WV - Gov. Jim Justice today ordered all United States and West Virginia flags displayed at the Capitol complex in Charleston and all state facilities throughout the state be lowered to half-staff on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019, in commemoration of the burial service for U.S. Army Air Forces Sgt. John Kalausich.
Sgt. Kalausich, a native of Charleston and a graduate of East Bank High School, was tragically killed on March 21, 1945, when the A-26B bomber aircraft he was aboard was hit by anti-aircraft fire and went missing during a combat mission from Couvron, France to Dulment, Germany.
After 73 years missing, Sgt. Kalausich’s remains were accounted for on Dec. 13, 2018, and returned to his family on Thursday evening.
The West Virginia Army National Guard Honor Guard team will provide honors for Sgt. Kalausich as he is laid to rest Saturday at Tyler Mountain Memorial Gardens.
STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA
By the Governor
WHEREAS, John Kalausich was born in Nineteen Hundred Twenty-five, the son of the late Eli and Mary Kalausich of Charleston, West Virginia; and
WHEREAS, John Kalausich graduated from East Bank High School in Nineteen Hundred Forty-two and worked briefly at Fairchild Aircraft Factory in Hagerstown, Maryland; and
WHEREAS, John Kalausich joined the United States Army Air Forces Reserves in Nineteen Hundred Forty-three; and
WHEREAS, Sergeant John Kalausich was a member of the 642nd Bombardment Squadron Group, 9th Bombardment Division and 9th Air Force; and
WHEREAS, on the Twenty-first day of March, Nineteen Hundred Forty-five, Sergeant John Kalausich was aboard an A-26B bomber when his aircraft was hit by enemy anti-aircraft fire and went missing during a combat mission from Couvron, France to Dulment, Germany; and
WHEREAS, Sergeant John Kalausich is survived by his sister, Helen; several nieces and nephews; he is preceded in death by his parents Eli and Mary Kalausich; sisters, Eva, Matilda "Tillie" and Margaret; and brother, George; and
WHEREAS, the people of the State of West Virginia mourn the loss of this soldier, and our most heartfelt sympathies are extended to his family, his friends, his fellow comrades in the United States Army, and all those who knew and loved him.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, JIM JUSTICE, by virtue of the authority vested in me as the Governor of the State of West Virginia, do hereby ORDER that all United States and State flags displayed at all State facilities throughout the State be displayed at half-staff from dawn until dusk on Saturday, the Twenty-third day of February, Two Thousand Nineteen, the day of services for Sergeant John Kalausich, in honor of the distinguished life and service of Sergeant John Kalausich.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of West Virginia to be affixed.
DONE at the Capitol in the City of Charleston, State of West Virginia, this the Twenty-second day of February, in the year of our Lord, Two Thousand Nineteen, and in the One Hundred Fifty-Sixth year of the State.