"43 years. That's a long time," says Doug Meroney
Four decades -- plagued with uncertainty.
"We weren't ready to have one of them missing in action," says Harriett Montgomery, cousin of Virgil Meroney.
When Air Force Captain Virgil Meroney was shot down in Laos during the Vietnam War, the chances of recovery was slim to none.
"It's a terrible feeling," says Montgomery.
Sparking a 43 year effort to bring Meroney back home to Arkansas.
"It was heartwarming and heart wrenching all those things add up to knowing we're finally going to have closure," says Doug Meroney, Virgil's brother.
Accompanied by fellow airmen, Captain Meroney made the journey to his final resting place this week.
"That was tough. I've been through a lot of military honor guard ceremonies, but when it's your own, you just sort of look around and say all of these people are doing this in honor of my brother," says Doug Meroney
"It made me feel good that they were all here celebrating his life. It's more of a celebration instead of just knowing that we're putting him into the ground."
A final chapter to a story, waiting 43 years for an ending.
"I cannot believe it . . . this is absolutely wonderful for our whole family," says Montgomery.