Missouri woman delivers letters from WWII veteran killed in action to daughter 70 years later

DAYTON - A serviceman from Missouri -- killed in action during WWII-- wrote letters to a daughter he'd never met.

Those letters never made it; until Sunday.

For more than a decade, Donna Gregory has been searching for answers after finding a box containing a purple heart. Also inside, a letter to an infant daughter dated Feb. 27, 1944.

Pfc. John Eddington was killed in action just months after that letter was written. He never had the chance to meet his daughter, Peggy.

Gregory found the box inside a home in St. Louis and made it her mission to find Peggy.

"I laid that Purple Heart on his grave, and I told him that he could finally rest in peace because, just as soon as I could get to her, his daughter would finally have his letter and she would finally know how he felt about her," said Gregory.

She finally found her three months ago, living in Dayton, Nev. The Patriot Guard riders escorted Donna all the way from Missouri to Dayton to deliver the medal and letter.

Peggy Eddington-Smith finally got to read the letter her father wrote nearly 70 years ago.

"For some stranger to do that, and from my hometown, I don't know the words for her," said Eddington-Smith.


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