PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Wednesday, December 19, 2012

WWII Dog Tags Found in France Returned to Service Member’s Family for the Holidays

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. - On Thursday a Vandenberg Airman will accept a very special gift that has traveled over 5,500 miles for the holidays.

After more than 68 years, Staff Sgt. Jason Riggs, 576th Flight Test Squadron Airman, will be reunited with his great uncle’s lost dog tags from WWII at 1 p.m. on Dec. 20 at the 576th Flight Test Squadron’s Main Conference Room here.

Riggs is one of the closest living family members of Army Private first class James F. Courtney, who served as a light truck driver with the 59th Signal Battalion during the Allied advance into German-occupied France following D-Day in June, 1944. The tags were found in the attic of a home along the Allies’ route in Normandy, France.

Roger Delarocque, a French bed and breakfast owner, contacted his American friend, Dan Potter, a resident of Lancaster, Calif., two years ago, after receiving the set of WWII dog tags from a friend who came across the dog tags in the attic of a house at 3 Rue Pierre Devouassoud, in the small village of Orglandes, France. It is unknown how the dog tags were lost or came to be in the home’s attic, but Courtney did in fact survive combat and return to the United States after the war.

Delarocque asked Potter to return the dog tags to the family on behalf of the French people and it has taken Potter all of the last two years to track down Riggs.

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