In honor of National POW/MIA Recognition Day, Mayor Harold E. Miller and City Manager Michael A. Adams recognized Army Private First Class John J. Sitarz, formerly MIA, by presenting his sister, Bernice Krayzel, with a plaque and flowers.
John J. Sitarz was born in 1925, the son of Sofia and Joseph Sitarz. He was from Weirton and the second youngest in a family of eight siblings. His military service began in 1944 at the age of 19. He was given the option to stay in the
United States and distribute apparel to the G.I.’s but wanted to go fight for his country.
After Private First Class John J. Sitarz fought in the Battle of Hurtgen Forest in Germany, he was declared missing in November of 1944. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency is dedicated to accounting for service members who are still declared missing. A few years ago, the family of Army Private First Class John J. Sitarz received a call that they may have found the young Weirton soldier more than 70 years after he was fighting in Germany during World War II. After further testing, it was confirmed on May 27, 2020, that Army Private First Class John Sitarz was no longer missing.
Jim Bell, Identification Specialist with the U.S. Army, met with Sitarz’s youngest sister, Bernice Krayzel, who still lives in Weirton, to present her with his service medals and help with funeral arrangements. In November of 2021, a two-day service was held in honor of John Sitarz, which began in Arlington’s chapel and ended with a procession to his final resting place. U.S. Army Private First Class John J. Sitarz was buried in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.