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Sergeant Robert C. Dakin, US Army

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“Welcome home. It is never too late to come home. It is never too late to receive the honor and the thanks due to you. Your mother missed you all...Read More »
1 of 19 | Posted by: Angela Smith - Calera, AL

“Welcome home Sergeant. Thank you for your service and sacrifice to our great country. RIP Dear soldier with your family. You are home and loved. ”
2 of 19 | Posted by: Cathy Royer - White Plains, GA

My Father Gordon R. Potter and Mr Dakin delilivering ice in Waltham “I believe that Robert's dad and my dad worked together deliving ice in Waltham in the 30's & 40's. ”
3 of 19 | Posted by: Joe Potter - Former neighbour

“Welcome home soldier! You've been reassigned to the gates of heaven. A proud country welcomes you back. ”
4 of 19 | Posted by: Carl - Newton, MA

“My Uncle Staff Sergeant Dominic Marrocco was also killed in action in Korea. It took nine months for his remains to be returned to the States, I...Read More »
5 of 19 | Posted by: Paul Pasquarosa - Needham, MA

“God bless you and thank you for your service. Welcome HOME. ”
6 of 19 | Posted by: Jeanmarie Fox Rivera - Waltham, MA

“To the family of Sgt. Robert Dakin.... The outpouring of Patriotic Honor and Tribute given to your fallen hero....What pride to Those with him in...Read More »
7 of 19 | Posted by: Brian Angelo - Bonita Springs, FL

“Welcome back home uncle Bobby. I'm sorry that my Great-Grandmother (Your Mother) isn't with us anymore as she was waiting for this day for as long...Read More »
8 of 19 | Posted by: Jason Cline - Waltham, MA

“As the nephew of another Korean soldier, Army Sgt. Christopher Y. Vars, who also had been missing for 65 years,and was returned to his family on...Read More »
9 of 19 | Posted by: Arthur Vars - Reading, MA

“god bless you uncle bobby nana dakin will be so glad you came home ”
10 of 19 | Posted by: robert dakin cline - metheun, MA

“Welcome home soldier ”
11 of 19 | Posted by: Alice Alton - Summerville, SC

“lighting a candle for Nana Dakin ”
12 of 19 | Posted by: Betty Dwoske - Canton, MA

“Please let me offer my heartfelt condolences to all of Bob's loved ones. For those who do not know me, I was the director of aquatics as well as a...Read More »
13 of 19 | Posted by: andrea doucette james - lakeland, FL

“Thank you for your service and glad you will be finally coming home to Massachusetts ”
14 of 19 | Posted by: kimberly - dorchester, MA

“Thank you Dakin Family for your service. May peace surround you as your son and brother comes home to rest. Welcome home Bob.....welcome home. ”
15 of 19 | Posted by: Ginnie (Curtis) Aloia - TN

“God bless your family ”
16 of 19 | Posted by: Jon Schroeder - Waltham, MA

“Thank you for your service. Please rest in peace in arms of your parents. ”
17 of 19 | Posted by: Robin Capello - Waltham, MA

“Welcome Home - Sorry it took so long to get you back on US Soil.... ”
18 of 19 | Posted by: Juan Morales - Joliet, IL

19 of 19 | Posted by: JANE TUMMINELLI - WINDHAM, NH

Tuesday, December 1 ---

Waltham – Thanksgiving Day fell on the twenty-third of November in 1950. Two days later an enormous snowstorm hit the Boston area and a day after that more than 300,000 Chinese troops crossed the Yalu River into North Korea and the world changed forever for Thorn and Louise Dakin of Lexington Street.

Their only boy, and the apple of his mother's eye, Bobby, enlisted into the United States Army in May, 1949 and a little over a year later he found himself assigned as an infantryman with the Army's Company L, 3rd Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment of the 7th Infantry Division.

His unit, part of a wider United Nations effort, was sent to the Chosin Reservoir area of North Korea. When the communist attack came that November the balance of power shifted and thousands of young Americans would pay the ultimate price . . . including Thorn and Louise's Bob.

Corporal Robert Campbell Dakin was 22 when he went missing on the 12th of December, 1950 even though it would be three years later, and a promotion to sergeant, before he was officially listed as killed in action; body not recovered.

He was born in Waltham on June 4, 1928 and was a lifelong resident before joining the service. He went to Waltham High where his tall, athletic frame helped to make him a three sport standout on the track, football and basketball teams.

In addition to his mother and father sitting around that Thanksgiving table sixty-five years ago were his sisters, Ruth, Joan, Helen and Barbara and other family members who prayed for his safe return.

It took a while for the telegram to arrive that delivered the terrible news.

In a Waltham News Tribune article that appeared after her son was officially declared dead by the Army in 1953 Louise had this to say, "I don't think I can ever give up hoping for him," said Mrs. Thorn Dakin of Lexington Street, mother of Sergeant Robert C. Dakin, "I just feel it. I've written to the boys who've come back from prison camps. I saw a picture once and thought sure it was Bob. But you can't be sure."

Thorn died in 1977 and Louise some years later always holding out hope that word would come of Bob's safe return.

Comfort will come knowing that Bob's body will finally be returned home to Waltham and he will be buried in the soil from which he left so long ago.

Left to mourn his passing are his sister, Barbara Rewis of Fleming Island, Florida and several nieces, nephews and their families.

Bob was also the brother of the late Ruth Cline Obett, Joan Sukey and Helen Sheridan.

Family, friends and the community will honor and remember Bob's life by gathering for calling hours in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rte. 20), Waltham on Friday, December 11th from 4 to 8 p.m. and again on Saturday morning, December 12th in First Parish Church, 50 Church Street, Waltham where his funeral service will be held at 10 a.m.

Burial will follow in Mount Feake Cemetery, Waltham.

Michael Russo, Waltham's Veterans Agent, will assist individuals and groups to line the route of travel from the church to the cemetery on Saturday morning after the service. The procession will take Sergeant Dakin for a last ride through the center of town leaving Lexington Street, onto Main Street, onto Moody Street and finally to Maple Street to the cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to the Waltham Boys & Girls Club, 20 Exchange Street, Waltham, MA 02451.

"The soldier above all others prays for peace,
for it is the soldier who must suffer and bear the deepest
wounds and scars of war."

--- Douglas MacArthur

. . . and sometimes . . . their families do too.

May his memory be eternal.

This is the first in a series of three articles about the life and death of Sergeant Dakin.

Chapter Two of this story can be found here:

Chapter Three can be found here: