WICHITA — After 70 years, the remains of a Kansas priest who is being considered for sainthood arrived home Saturday afternoon, according to Catholic Diocese of Wichita.
The remains of Rev. Emil Kapaun were flown back to Kansas from Hawaii and then taken to Pilsen — Kapaun's hometown — before being taken to Wichita, where a funeral is scheduled for Sept. 29. He died in a prisoner of war camp during the Korean War.
Kapaun was captured in 1950 while attending to soldiers during the Korean War. He died of pneumonia at the POW camp while continuing to minister to fellow prisoners.
Kapaun was awarded the Medal of Honor. In 1993, the Catholic church named him a “Servant of God,” which began the lengthy process of canonization.
The Defense Department’s POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced in March that Kapaun’s remains had been identified at the agency’s laboratory at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
On March 4, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency reported the remains of Father Emil Kapaun were positively identified.
A public Vigil service for Fr. Kapaun will be held at Hartman Arena on September 28th at 7:00 p.m. On Wednesday, September 29th a Mass will be held at Hartman Arena at 10:30 a.m. Following the Mass of Christian Burial at Hartman Arena, Father Kapaun's remains will process from Veterans Memorial Park (339 Veterans Memorial Pkwy) by way of horse-drawn caisson from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception where he will finally be laid to rest.