A homecoming 74 years in the making

DEFUNIAK SPRINGS, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Many people gathered in downtown DeFuniak Springs Friday to honor Army Air Forces 1st Lieutenant Ewart T. Sconiers.

Sconiers is a DeFuniak Springs native who died as a prisoner of war in 1944. He was buried in Germany.

After years of searching, his remains were brought back to northwest Florida Thursday.

On Friday, Sconiers was honored with a parade through DeFuniak Springs and a tree planting by Lake DeFuniak.

For Sconiers' family members, this day has been a long time coming.

"It's moving and so deeply meaningful to my family and to me," Sconiers' niece Pamela Whitelock said.

Senator George Gainer and Representative Brad Drake are working to rename part of Highway 90 in Walton County in honor of Sconiers.

"They had mentioned we might want to wait another week or so until we got this thing official in the Senate, but I said 'I think he's waited long enough, let's go ahead,'" Gainer said.

Sconiers' funeral is Saturday at Southwide Baptist Church in DeFuniak Springs. It starts at 11:00 a.m. and is open to the public.

Sconiers will be buried on the 74th anniversary of his initial burial.