NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The remains of a soldier who went missing in action 37 years ago in Lebanon are finally back home in Israel.

In 1982, Zachary Baumel, who was born in New York City, fought for Israel against against Syrian troops in Lebanon.

Zach Baumel (credit: Israel Defense Forces)

Israel’s Defense Forces say the 21-year-old Baumel was captured and went missing with four other soldiers.

Two were returned alive several years later.

Baumel was one of three soldiers unaccounted for, until a plane carrying his body landed in Israel Wednesday.

“The boy that was born in Brooklyn, New York and came to defend the Jewish people in the state of Israel, his body was recovered and will be brought to burial, proper burial, in the land of Israel,” said Dani Dayan, consul general of Israel in New York.

Baumel’s remains, clothing and knotted ritual fringes were returned to his family.

Israel says it is working to secure the return of the soldiers still missing.


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