The search for the family of a fallen World War II sailor has reached a dead end

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When someone found a World War II purple heart, Ben Kuele, director of veterans services in Attleboro, Mass., thought finding its rightful owner would be easy. But the search turned into a mystery. Quelle began with a few pointers. “On the back of that medal is the name of a real veteran, and that was Hugh Farren,” he said. There was also a death notice, an old address in Dorchester and the name of the soldier’s sister, Helen Doherty, but the trail was frozen. “It’s actually one of the hardest mysteries to solve, because every time I try, I get stuck,” Quell said. Little is known about Farren other than his military record. He was born in 1904, came to the United States from Ireland and enlisted in the Navy during World War II at the age of 39. Farren served aboard the USS Liscome Bay, which sank in the Pacific Ocean on Thanksgiving Day 1944. dead, his body lost at sea. His surviving sister received a Purple Heart, but what happened to him decades later remains unclear. Then, in 1962, the city of Boston named a pedestrian bridge after Farren in Dorchester. Quell said it was time to honor the fallen sailor, find his family and return the medal to his rightful heir. “It appears that this was someone who had friends and was well-known in his community and then put his life on the line as an adult and ended up paying the ultimate price. This is the least we can do,” said Kvel. He is asking the public for help in locating Farren’s family members.

When someone found a World War II purple heart, Ben Kuele, director of veterans services in Attleboro, Mass., thought finding its rightful owner would be easy. But the search turned into a mystery.

Quelle started with a few pointers.

“On the back of that medal is the name of a real veteran, which was Hugh Farren,” he said.

There was also a death notice, an old address in Dorchester and the name of the soldier’s sister, Helen Doherty, but the trail was frozen.

“It’s actually one of the hardest puzzles because every time I try I get stuck,” Quell said.

Little is known about Farren other than his military record. He was born in 1904, came to the United States from Ireland and enlisted in the Navy during World War II at the age of 39.

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Farren served aboard the USS Liscome Bay, which sank in the Pacific Ocean on Thanksgiving Day 1944.

Farren was presumed dead, his body lost at sea. His surviving sister received a Purple Heart, but what happened to him decades later remains unclear.

Then, in 1962, the city of Boston named a pedestrian bridge after Farren in Dorchester.

Quell said it was time to honor the fallen sailor, find his family and return the medal to his rightful heir.

“It appears that this was someone who had friends and was well-known in his community and then put his life on the line as an adult and ended up paying the ultimate price. This is the least we can do,” said Kvel.

He is asking the public for help in locating Farren’s family members.

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