DELTA, Utah (AP) — The remains of a Navy sailor who died during the attack on Pearl Harbor have returned to Salt Lake City, and a ceremony at his home in Delta is scheduled, officials said.
Navy Radioman 3rd Class Theodore Q. Jensen, 22, of Delta was identified in December 2020 using dental and anthropological analysis, KSTU-TV reported. He was aboard the USS Oklahoma when it was attacked by Japanese aircraft, killing more than 400 crewmen, including Jensen.
Jensen was buried with the other soldiers and sailors, and in 2015, the Navy started exhuming and identifying them, officials said.
“His buddies drove back to my mom and said as he got off the ship, he said, ‘Oh, I forgot my camera,‘” said Sharon Senecal, Jensen’s niece. “And that was the last they saw of him.”
It took eight weeks for the Navy to declare Jensen missing and eight years to declare him dead. But his family did not lose hope of bringing him home to Delta, about 120 miles (193.12 kilometers) south of Salt Lake City.
Jensen’s mother died when he was six years old, so he grew up with extended family members.
“I’m excited to have him back in Utah and be buried back in Delta where he belongs,” said Margaret Ribeek, Jensen’s niece. “My grandfather always wanted him home.”