RECENTLY FOUND HEROES

 

from ALL PAST WARS

 

 

HONOR THE DEAD BY HELPING THE LIVING”

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

"Returning with Honor"
March 03, 2017

KHAMMOUANE, Laos --

With 1,614 service members missing in action from the Vietnam War, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) deploys hundreds of service members,
DoD civilians, and contractors all over the world in hopes of returning our nation’s fallen heroes.

Recently a team of 59 personnel completed DPAA’s second Laos mission of fiscal year 2017, covering the Central East region of Laos. From rice patties to mountainsides,
the teams excavated thousands of square meters of land recovering important evidence relating to missing servicemen lost during the war.

“I’m very honored to have been part of this initiative to bring our missing home,” said U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Walgenbach,
recovery non-commissioned officer. “This mission has been the most unique part of my 13 year career in the military and I know others feel the same way.”

Every team member plays an important role in mission success. Whether that is the recovery non-commissioned officer setting up the sites,
or the recovery leader collecting scientific data, working together ensures nothing is overlooked and the safety of the team remains number one priority.

Due to the efforts of the teams, Laos representatives handed over possible remains to the U.S. to be repatriated and welcomed back on American soil after 48 years.
Upon arrival the possible remains will be transported to DPAA’s laboratory for examination and possible identification.

“During this mission I have worked along side some of the greatest men and women I’ve had the pleasure of meeting,
and being chosen for the repatriation ceremony was a perfect way to end such a great mission,” said U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Andrew Brod,
recovery non-commissioned officer. “It is truly an honor to be bringing closure to the families of our fallen service members.”

The hard work and continued dedication of these teams makes it possible for DPAA to fulfill our nations promise and
provide fullest possible accounting for our missing service members to their families and the nation.

 

U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Ameil Fredeluces, edic, and U.S. Marine Corps. Staff Sgt. Eddie Ludwig, explosive ordinance disposal technician,
remove dirt from units during excavation operations as part of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency’s mission in the Khammouane Province, Laos,
January 29, 2017.  Recovery Team Three executed excavation operations in search of two missing U.S. Air Force pilots who crashed while on a visual
reconnaissance mission during the Vietnam War over 48 years ago. DPAA’s mission is to provide the fullest possible accounting
for our missing personnel to their families and the nation.

 

 

Members of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency dig units during excavation operations as part of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency’s
mission in the Khammouane Province, Laos, January 26, 2017. Recovery Team Three executed excavation operations in search of two missing
U.S. Air Force pilots who crashed while on a visual reconnaissance mission during the Vietnam War over 48 years ago. DPAA’s mission is to provide the
fullest possible accounting for our missing personnel to their families and the nation.

 

 

Jack Kenkeo, life support investigator, shovels dirt from the screening stations during excavation operations as part of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency’s
mission in the Khammouane Province, Laos, January 23, 2017. Recovery Team Three executed excavation operations in search of two missing U.S. Air Force pilots
who crashed while on a visual reconnaissance mission during the Vietnam War over 48 years ago.
DPAA’s mission is to provide the fullest possible accounting for our missing personnel to their families and the nation.

 

 

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Francis Sangiamvongse, linguist, screens soil with local villagers during excavation operations as part of the Defense POW/MIA
Accounting Agency’s mission in the Khammouane Province, Laos, January 29, 2017. Recovery Team Three executed excavation operations in search
of two missing U.S. Air Force pilots who crashed while on a visual reconnaissance mission during the Vietnam War over 48 years ago.
DPAA’s mission is to provide the fullest possible accounting for our missing personnel to their families and the nation.

 

 

Lynn Rakos, scientific recovery expert, waters hard soil to help with excavation operations as part of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency’s mission
in the Khammovan Province, Laos, January 23, 2017. Recovery Team three executed excavation operations in search of two missing U.S. Air Force pilots
who crashed while on a visual reconnaissance mission during the Vietnam War over 48 years ago.
DPAA’s mission is to provide the fullest possible accounting for our missing personnel to their families and the nation.

 

 

In March of 2017, Making the effort to thank the troops for what they do out in the field means everything.
With a DPAA recovery team in Quang Nam Province, two hours west of Da Nang, Vietnam.

 

 


 

 

USS Arizona BB-39

USS Arizona was a Pennsylvania-class battleship built for and by the United States Navy in the mid-1910s. Named in honor of the 48th state's recent admission into the union, the ship was the second and last of the Pennsylvania class of "super-dreadnought" battleships. Although commissioned in 1916, the ship remained stateside during World War I. Shortly after the end of the war, Arizona was one of a number of American ships that briefly escorted President Woodrow Wilson to the Paris Peace Conference. The ship was sent to Turkey in 1919 at the beginning of the Greco-Turkish War to represent American interests for several months. Several years later, she was transferred to the Pacific Fleet and remained there for the rest of her career.

Aside from a comprehensive modernization in 1929–31, 
Arizona was regularly used for training exercises between the wars, including the annual Fleet Problems (training exercises). When an earthquake struck Long Beach, California, in 1933, Arizona's crew provided aid to the survivors. Two years later, the ship was featured in a Jimmy Cagney film, Here Comes the Navy, about the romantic troubles of a sailor. In April 1940, she and the rest of the Pacific Fleet were transferred from California to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as a deterrent to Japanese imperialism.

During the 
Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, Arizona was bombed. After a bomb detonated in a powder magazine, the battleship exploded violently and sank, killing 1,177 officers and crewmen. Unlike many of the other ships sunk or damaged that day, Arizona was irreparably damaged by the force of the magazine explosion, though the Navy removed parts of the ship for reuse. The wreck still lies at the bottom of Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial, dedicated on 30 May 1962 to all those who died during the attack, straddles the ship's hull.

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma BB-37 

The USS Oklahoma was on Battleship Row in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. That was the morning that the Japanese Empire attacked the United States by surprise.

The Japanese used dive–bombers, fighter–bombers, and torpedo planes to sink nine ships, including five battleships, and severely damage 21 ships.
There were 2,402 US deaths from the attack. 1,177 of those deaths were from the USS Arizona, while 429 of the deaths were from the USS Oklahoma.

The crew of the USS Oklahoma did everything they could to fight back. In the first ten minutes of the battle, though, eight torpedoes hit the Oklahoma, and she began to capsize.  A ninth torpedo would hit her as she sunk in the mud.  14 Marines, and 415 sailors would give their lives. 32 men were cut out through the hull while the others were beneath the waterline.  Banging could be heard for over 3 days and then there was silence.

After the battle, the Navy decided that they could not salvage the Oklahoma due to how much damage she had received.  The difficult savage job began in March 1943, and Oklahoma entered dry dock 28 December. Decommissioning  September 1, 1944, Oklahoma was stripped of guns and superstructure, and sold December 5, 1946 to Moore Drydock Co., Oakland, Calif. Oklahoma parted her tow line and sank May 17, 1947.  540 miles out, bound from Pearl Harbor to San Francisco.  Today, there is a memorial to the USS Oklahoma and the 429 sailors and marines lost on December 7, 1941, located on Ford Island in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

 

 

USS Oklahoma Memorial at Pearl Harbor

 

 

 

Service Personnel Not Recovered Following WWII from MICHIGAN - 2476
(as of December 2016)

 

Service Personnel Not Recovered Following Korea from MICHIGAN - 342
(as of December 2016)

 

Service Personnel Not Recovered Following Cold War from MICHIGAN - 4
(as of December 2016)

 

Service Personnel Not Recovered Following Viet Nam from MICHIGAN - 49
(as of December 2016)

 

 

 

 

 


 

RECENTLY FOUND
 HEROES in 2017

 

 

 Airmen From World War II Accounted For
June 23
, 2017

Army Air Forces Staff Sgt. Byron H. Nelson, 28,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from World War II, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces Staff Sgt. Byron H. Nelson, 28, of Primghar, Iowa, will be buried July 1 in his hometown. On April 25, 1944, Nelson was a member of the 721st Bomb Squadron, 450th Bomb Group, 15th Air Force, and was the nose gunner aboard an American B-24G Liberator bomber. While flying from Manduria, Italy, to a target area near Varese, Italy, three aircraft became separated from the formation due to dense clouds. Nelson’s aircraft was one the three that disappeared. It was later learned that eight of the 10 people in his aircraft parachuted from the bomber after being attacked by German fighters. Six crewmen were able to successfully evade capture and two were captured. A captured crewman was told by a German interrogator that two crewmen perished in the crash, one being Nelson.

On Sept. 9, 1947, the American Graves Registration Service disinterred remains from a cemetery near Fognano, Italy, where they were reportedly buried by local residents following the crash. The AGRS then moved his remains temporarily to the U.S. Military Cemetery at Mirandola on Sept. 10 as “Mirandola Unknown X-190.”

On July 24, 1948, the remains were disinterred for attempted identification. The remains were unable to be identified and were re-interred in the Florence American Cemetery on May 26, 1949.

DPAA researchers made a historical association between Mirandola Unknown X-190 and Nelson's incident based on wartime records written by the Italian Military Police in Brisighella, as well as information gathered during field investigations with local Italian citizens. Due to the historical evidence and newly available technology, the remains were disinterred in August 2015.

To identify Nelson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched a grand nephew, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

Currently there are 73,029 service members still unaccounted for from World War II.

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 23
, 2017

Army Sgt. James W. Sharp, 24,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, missing during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. James W. Sharp, 24, of Mannington, West Virginia, will be buried June 29 in Grafton, West Virginia. In late November, 1950, Sharp was a member of Battery B, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 31st Regimental Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was attacked by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. The American forces withdrew south with the Chinese attacks continuing. By December 6, the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Because Sharp could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Dec. 6, 1950.

Sharp’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no repatriated Americans reported Sharp as a prisoner of war. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Feb. 17, 1954.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Sharp’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

During the 25th Joint Recovery Operation in 2001, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern bank of the Chosin Reservoir, Changjin County, North Korea, based on information provided by two North Korean witnesses. The site was approximately one kilometer from the 31st RCT’s defensive perimeter. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least seven individuals.

To identify Sharp’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, including dental and chest radiograph comparison, as well as DNA analysis, including mitochondrial DNA, which matched a brother and a sister.

 

Today, 7,725 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War.

 

 

 

Pilot Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
June 22
, 2017

Air Force Col. Roosevelt Hestle, Jr. 38

Air Force Col. Roosevelt Hestle, Jr., 38, Orlando Fl. has now been accounted for.

On July 6, 1966, Hestle was a pilot assigned to the 388th Tactical Fighter Squadron, aboard the lead aircraft in a flight of four F-105s on a strike mission against surface-to-air missile sites in northern Vietnam. As they approached the target, Hestle issued a missile launch warning, and all aircraft began evasive action by diving toward the ground. As the aircraft approached the town of Thai Ngyuen, anti-aircraft began firing at them. Due to the evasive action, the other aircraft lost site of Hestle. Crews aboard one aircraft observed a large ball rising from the ground, though no crash was observed. Contact attempts were unsuccessful and no parachutes or distress signals were seen or heard. Due to hostile conditions in the area, search and rescue attempts could not be initiated and an aerial search of the area produced no results. Based on this information, Hestle was declared missing in action.
 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

Today there are 1,601 American servicemen and civilians that are still unaccounted for from the Vietnam War.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 21
, 2017

Machinist’s Mate 1st Class Earl R. Melton, 24,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Machinist’s Mate 1st Class Earl R. Melton, 24, of Lakewood, New Jersey, will be buried June 28, in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On Dec. 7, 1941, Melton was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Melton.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Melton.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Melton’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial, Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat and autosomal DNA analysis, which matched a niece and four nephews, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Melton’s records.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From Vietnam War Accounted For
June 21
, 2017

Air Force Col. Patrick H. Wood, 36,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Air Force Col. Patrick H. Wood, 36, of Kansas City, Missouri, will be buried June 28 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On Feb. 6, 1967, Wood was the pilot of an HH-3E aircraft carrying three other crewmembers on a recovery mission over North Vietnam. After successfully recovering an individual from a separate incident, Wood’s aircraft was hit by enemy ground fire, which caused it to crash. Rescue aircraft flew over the area, but were only able to recover one survivor. Following the incident, the U.S. Air Force declared Wood missing in action.

Multiple joint investigations were conducted concerning the fate of these missing Americans.

During the 120th Joint Field Activity in December 2015, a team from the Vietnamese Office for Seeking Missing Persons (VNOSMP) interviewed a witness who was in possession of possible human remains. The witness led the VNOSMP team to the site where the remains were found, which correlated to the crash site of the HH-3E. After a joint forensic review of the remains, the team recommended the remains be repatriated to the U.S.

Scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial, Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat and autosomal DNA analysis, which matched his sister and son; anthropological analysis; as well as circumstantial evidence in making the identification of Wood.

The support from the government of Vietnam was vital to the success of this recovery

 

 

 

 

 Airmen Captured From World War II Accounted For
June 21
, 2017

 

Army Air Forces Pvt. Harold S. Hirschi, 29,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that a U.S. serviceman, missing from World War II, has been identified and is being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces Pvt. Harold S. Hirschi, 29, of Oklahoma City, will be buried June 28, in Andersonville, Georgia. On Dec. 8, 1941, Hirschi was assigned to Headquarters Squadron, 19th Bombardment Group, when Japanese forces invaded the Philippine Islands. Intense fighting continued until May 6, 1942, when American forces on Corregidor Island surrendered.

Thousands of U.S. and Filipino service members from Bataan and Corregidor were taken prisoner; including many who were forced to endure the Bataan Death March, en route to Japanese prisoner of war (POW) camps. Hirschi was among those reported captured after the surrender of Corregidor and who were eventually moved to the Cabanatuan POW camp. More than 2,500 POWs perished in this camp during the remaining years of the war.

Hirschi was admitted to the Cabanatuan Camp station hospital for illness, where he died on Nov. 19, 1942. According to prison records, Hirschi was buried along with 13 fellow prisoners in a local camp cemetery in Cabanatuan, Grave 717.

Following the war, American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) personnel exhumed those buried at the Cabanatuan cemetery and relocated the remains to a temporary U.S. military cemetery near Manila. In late 1947, the AGRS again exhumed the remains at the Manila cemetery in an attempt to identify them. Due to the circumstances of the POW deaths and burials, the extensive commingling, and the limited identification technologies of the time, all of the remains could not be individually identified. The unidentified remains were reburied as unknowns in a permanent American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) cemetery at Fort McKinley in Manila, Philippines (known as Manila American Cemetery and Memorial.)

In 2014, the Secretary of the Army granted permission to exhume ten graves associated with the Cabanatuan Common Grave 717. On August 28, 2014, the remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory for identification.

To identify Hirschi’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched two cousins, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include anthropological analysis, which matched his records.

 

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From World War II Accounted For
June 20
, 2017

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. George W. Betchley, 21

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. George W. Betchley, 21, Yonkers New York, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On March 22, 1945, Betchley was a member of the 429th Bombardment Squadron, 2nd Bombardment Group, 15th Air Force, serving as a navigator on a B-17G Flying Fortress, carrying a crew of ten on a bombing mission targeting the Ruhland oil refinery near Schwarzheide, Germany. The aircraft crashed in southwest Poland after two of its engines and the left wing were reportedly damaged by German anti-aircraft fire, and German fighters. The pilot and several crewmembers parachuted out, but only the pilot and co-pilot survived. The other eight crewmembers were not recovered following the crash. Betchley was declared missing in action as of March 22, 1945, but his status was later amended to killed in action.

Awards received; Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal, American Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.
 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 20
, 2017

U.S. Marine Corps Pfc. George B. Murray

U.S. Marine Corps Pfc. George B. Murray how now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Murray was assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated.
Murray was killed on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

The support from the Republic of Kiribati was vital to the success of this recovery.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 20
, 2017

Army Pfc. Albert E. Atkins, 21

Army Pfc. Albert E. Atkins, 21, Hamilton, N.Y. missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

On May 23, 1951, Atkins was a member of Company E, 2nd Battalion, 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team, when his unit was attacking enemy forces near Mae-Bong, South Korea. The regiment's mission was to secure Hill 911, and as the company prepared to assault the hill, Atkins and two other soldiers from his company were reported missing in action.

Awards received;  Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Korean Service Medal, Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, United Nations Service Medal, Republic of Korea War Service Medal, and the  Combat Infantryman Badge.
 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 19
, 2017

Marine Corps Pfc. Ray James, 21

Marine Corps Pfc. Ray James, 21, Sylvarena, Miss. has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, James was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated.
James was killed on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 19
, 2017

Marine Corps Pvt. Archie W. Newell,

Marine Corps Pvt. Archie W. Newell, Snohomish Washington, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Newell was assigned to Company C, 2nd Tank Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Newell was killed on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 16
, 2017

Navy Seaman 1st Class George A. Coke, 18,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Seaman 1st Class George A. Coke, 18, of Arlington, Texas, will be buried June 24 in his hometown. On Dec. 7, 1941, Coke was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Coke.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Coke.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Coke’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) which matched a cousin and Y chromosome (Y-STR) DNA analysis, which matched a nephew, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons and anthropological analysis, which matched Coke’s records.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 16
, 2017

Army Cpl. Billie J. Jimerson, 19,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, who died while a prisoner of war during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Billie J. Jimerson, 19, of Kerens, Texas, will be buried June 23 in Portland, Oregon. In late November, 1950, Jimerson was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, when his unit engaged with opposing forces near Anju, North Korea. He was reported missing in action as of Nov. 28, 1950, when he could not be accounted for.

Returning American prisoners of war reported that Jimerson was captured by the enemy, died in captivity and was buried at Camp 5, Pyoktong, North Korea.

In September 1954, a set of remains reportedly recovered from a prisoner of war cemetery at Camp 5 were sent to the Central Identification Unit in Japan for attempted identification and further processing. This set of remains was designated X-14400, and was determined unidentifiable in November 1955. The remains were transferred to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu and interred as a Korean War Unknown.

In February 2014 the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency requested the disinterment of Unknown X-14400 after a thorough historical and scientific analysis indicated that the remains could likely be identified. In June 2014 after receiving approval, X-14400 was disinterred from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific and accessioned into the laboratory.

To identify Jimerson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, including dental and chest radiograph comparison, as well as DNA analysis, including mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which matched a sister and a nephew.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 16
, 2017

Army Cpl. Leslie R. Sutton, 24,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Leslie R. Sutton, 24, of Rochelle, Georgia, will be buried June 24 in his hometown. In late October 1950, Sutton was a member of Battery C, 99th Field Artillery Battalion, 1st Cavalry Division, when his unit received orders to take over positions occupied by the 11th and 12th Republic of Korea Army Regiments in the northwest region of North Korea, in the vicinity of Unsan. Within hours of establishing the command post, elements of the supported unit, the 8th Cavalry Regiment, encountered heavy fighting with the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF). In danger of being overwhelmed by the CPVF, the regiment received an order to withdraw southeast of Unsan, Nov. 1, 1950. Many of the men were captured or killed by the CPVF, and after several days of searching adjacent units and hospitals, Sutton was reported missing in action as of Nov. 2, 1950.

During the war, Sutton was not listed on any CPVF or [North] Korean People’s Army (KPA) Prisoners of War (POWs) lists. Additionally, no returning American prisoners reported his capture. Based on that information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953.

In July 2000, a joint U.S. and KPA recovery team conducted a Joint Recovery Operation at a site near Hwaong-ri Village, Unsan County, North Korea, based on information provided by a North Korean Witness. During the excavation, the team recovered military equipment, personal effects, and human remains. The remains were accessioned to the DPAA laboratory on July 24, 2000.

To identify Sutton’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y-chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (au-STR) DNA analysis, which matched a brother, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 16
, 2017

Navy Gunner’s Mate 1st Class Arthur C. Neuenschwander, 33

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Gunner’s Mate 1st Class Arthur C. Neuenschwander, 33, of Fessenden, North Dakota, will be buried June 24 in his hometown. On Dec. 7, 1941, Neuenschwander was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Neuenschwander

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Neuenschwander.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Neuenschwander’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a brother, a sister and two nephews, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 16
, 2017

Army Pvt. Gene J. Appleby, 30,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pvt. Gene J. Appleby, 30, of Columbus, Ohio, will be buried June 22 in Coshocton, Ohio. On Sept. 17, 1944, Appleby was a member of Company A, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, as part of Operation Market Garden to advance from the Netherlands into Germany. The regiment was tasked with landing at Drop Zone “T,” north of Groesbeek, Netherlands. Appleby successfully jumped and was seen on the ground by members of the unit. However, as the soldiers rallied to move toward their objective, Appleby was struck by enemy fire. The Army listed Appleby as missing in action as of Sept 17, 1944. After reviewing his case, the War Department found no further information and issued a presumptive finding of death as of Sept. 18, 1945.

On Sept. 8, 2011, the Royal Netherlands Army Recovery and Identification Unit (RIU) was notified by the Groesbeek Police of possible human remains found at the Groenendaal Farm by local residents. Officials conducted an excavation and recovered possible human remains and material evidence. The remains were transferred to the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, (now DPAA,) for identification.

Historians from DPAA working on cases of missing Americans from Operation Market Garden received valuable recovery information from the RIU and traveled to the original recovery site with the local researchers who originally found the remains. With this information, the DPAA historians established a list of individuals whose circumstances of loss and last known location matched the remains. Appleby was among the possible candidates. 

To identify Appleby’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) which matched a niece and Y-chromosome (Y-STR) DNA analysis, which matched a cousin; laboratory analysis, including dental and anthropological analysis, which matched Appleby’s records; and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 14
, 2017

Army Staff Sgt. Gerald L. Jacobsen, 28

Army Staff Sgt. Gerald L. Jacobsen, 28,  Minnesota, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On July 15, 1944, Jacobsen was a member of the 134th Infantry Regiment, 35th Infantry Division, which participated in the siege of Saint-Lô, France. Jacobsen, who was acting as an artillery spotter, was manning a mortar compound post near La Forge, approximately two kilometers northeast of Saint-Lô, when he and another service member went missing. The other service member’s body was later found near the command post but Jacobsen’s remains were not recovered and he was reported missing in action. The U.S. Army subsequently declared him deceased as of July 16, 1945.
Missing in Action or Buried at Sea, Tablets of the Missing at Normandy American Cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer,

Awards received; Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Combat Infantryman Badge, American Campaign Medal, & World War II Victory Medal.

 

In 2016, based on a family request, Unknown X-481, possibly correlated to Jacobsen, were disinterred for analysis.

DNA and laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.


 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 12
, 2017

Army Cpl. Edward Pool, 22,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Edward Pool, 22, of Paso Robles, California, will be buried June 19 in Portland, Oregon. In late November 1950, Pool was a member of 31st Heavy Mortar Company, 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By Dec. 6, the U.S. Army had evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Because Pool could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Nov. 30, 1950.

Pool’s name appeared on a list provided by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces and Korean People’s Army as a prisoner of war. Following the war, one returning American prisoner reported that Pool had died in January 1951. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Jan. 31, 1951.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned 208 boxes of commingled human remains to the United States, which we determined to contain the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicate that some of the remains were recovered from the vicinity of where Pool was believed to have died.

To identify Pool’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y-chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a brother and a niece, as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 9
, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles W. Thompson, 19

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles W. Thompson, 19, of Weaubleau, Missouri, will be buried June 17 in his hometown. On Dec. 7, 1941, Thompson was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Thompson.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identities of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unknowns in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Thompson.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Thompson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched two nephews and a niece, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

Charles will be buried, with full military honors, next to his mother's grave in the Fairview-Butcher Cemetery in Butcher.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 9
, 2017

Army Sgt. 1st Class Harold P. Haugland, 22

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Harold P. Haugland, 22, of Belgrade, Montana, will be buried June 17 in Bozeman, Montana. In late November, 1950, Haugland was a member of Company D, 15th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By early December, the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Because Haugland could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Dec. 2, 1950.

Haugland’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no returning American POWs reported him as a prisoner of war. The U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service planned to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Haugland’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

During the 36th Joint Recovery Operation in 2004, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern bank of the Chosin Reservoir, in the vicinity of Twikkae Village, North Korea, based on information provided by a Korean witness. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least five individuals.

To identify Haugland’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, as well as DNA analysis, including mitochondrial (mtDNA) and Y-chromosome (Y-STR) DNA, which matched two brothers.

 

 

 

 

Fighting Tiger Pilot Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 9
, 2017

Mr. John D. Armstrong, 24,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. civilian unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Mr. John D. Armstrong, 24, of Hutchinson, Kansas, will be buried June 17 in his hometown. In mid-1941, Armstrong, formerly in the U.S. Navy Reserve, was recruited to be among a small group of American pilots to battle Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Armstrong was training with other AVG pilots at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instituted an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Armstrong was killed during a training flight on Sept. 8, 1941, when his plane collided with another AVG member’s aircraft in midair. Armstrong was formally buried in the Airmen’s Cemetery at St. Luke’s Anglican Church in Toungoo.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The unknown remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-635, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, as World War II Unknowns.

On April 11, 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, unknown X-633 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Armstrong’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched three nieces; as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 9
, 2017

Army Pvt. Walter F. Piper, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors

Army Pvt. Walter F. Piper, 21, of Williamstown, New Jersey, will be buried June 17 in his hometown. In February 1951, Piper was a member of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, supporting Republic of Korea Army attacks against units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in the village of Hoengsong, an area known as the Central Corridor in South Korea. After enduring sustained enemy attacks, the American units withdrew to Wonju, South Korea. It was during this withdrawal that Piper was reported missing, as of Feb. 13, 1951.

On Dec. 26, 1951, Piper’s name appeared on a list provided by the CPVF and Korean People’s Army (KPA) of allied service members who died while in their custody. Two returning American prisoners of war reported that Piper had died while a prisoner at the Suan Prisoner of War Camp Complex in North Korea. Based off of this information, the Army declared him deceased as of June 18, 1951.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which were later determined to contain the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. On June 24, 1991, the DPRK turned over 11 boxes of remains believed to be unaccounted-for Americans from the war.

To identify Piper’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y-chromosome short tandem repeat (Y-SYR) and autosomal (auSTR) DNA analysis, which matched a brother, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
June 9
, 2017

Army Cpl. Edward L. Borders, 21,

Army Cpl. Edward L. Borders, 21, Saline Illiniois, has now been accounted for.

In early February 1951, Borders was a member of Dog Battery, 82nd Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion (Automatic Weapons), 2nd Infantry Division, when American units began supporting South Korean Army attacks against units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in an area known as the Central Corridor in North Korea. Dog Battery was part of a group known as Support Force 21 (SF21) and provided artillery fire support for the South Korean Army during its attack north on Hongch’on. On the evening of Feb. 11, 1951, the CPVF launched a massive counter offensive against the South Koreans, who were forced to withdraw, leaving Borders’ unit and the rest of SF21 behind at Changbong-ni. The SF 21 marched south along Route 29, fighting through ambushes and roadblocks, to Hoengsong and eventually to the city of Wonju. Borders was reported missing in action as of Feb. 13, 1951 when he did not report with his unit in Wonju.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which when combined with remains recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea, account for the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. Of the 208 boxes, 14 were reported to have been recovered from Ryongpho-ri, Suan County, North Hwanghae Province, North Korea.

Corporal Borders was awarded the Prisoner of War Medal, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Presidential Unit Citation and the Republic of Korea War Service Medal.

DNA and laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.
 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
June 7
, 2017

Marine Corps Pfc. Larry R. Roberts, 18,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Marine Corps Pfc. Larry R. Roberts, 18, of Damascus, Arkansas, will be buried June 14, in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. In November 1943, Roberts was assigned to Special Weapons Group, 2nd Defense Battalion, Fleet Marine Force, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Roberts was killed on Nov. 25, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Roberts’ remains were not recovered. On Oct. 11, 1949, a military review board declared Roberts’ remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

To identify Roberts’ remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) analysis, which matched a nephew, dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

 

 

 

 

Navy Pilot Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
June 3
, 2017

U.S. Navy Cmdr. Charles B. Goodwin, 25

U.S. Navy Cmdr. Charles B. Goodwin, 25, Haskell, TX,  has now been accounted for.

On Sept. 8, 1965, Goodwin was the pilot of an RF-8A aircraft, assigned to Detachment D, VPF-63, CVW-15, when he launched from the USS Coral Sea, for a combat photo mission over North Vietnam (now Socialist Republic of Vietnam.) At the time of the early-morning flight, numerous intense thunderstorms were reported between the USS Coral Sea and the North Vietnam. Fifteen minutes after launching, Goodwin reported that he had encountered thunderstorms en route to the target area. That was the last radio transmission from him. Search efforts over the target area and adjacent coastal waters were unsuccessful, no emergency radio signals were heard and no aircraft wreckage was sighted. Goodwin was declared missing in action as of Sept. 8, 1965.

In February 1988, a Vietnamese refugee provided information regarding the location of possible human remains and material evidence, including a military identification card for Goodwin. Between April 1993 and December 2016, multiple attempts were made by the Vietnamese Office for Seeking Missing Persons (VNOSMP) and Joint U.S./Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) teams to locate the crash site and remains of the pilot, without success. In December 2016, a Joint Forensic Review team received possible human remains that had been in the possession of a Vietnamese national. The remains were 
sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

DNA and laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.

The support from the government of Vietnam was vital to the success of this recovery.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Navy Pilot Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
June 3
, 2017

U.S. Air Force Reserve Capt. Joseph Smith, 25

U.S. Air Force Reserve Capt. Joseph Smith, 26, Assumption IL,  has now been accounted for.

On April 4, 1971, Smith was the pilot of a single-seat F-100D aircraft as the leader in a flight of two aircraft on a combat mission over Cambodia. While making a pass over the target, the pilot of the other aircraft noted white vapor streaming from the left wing of Smith's aircraft. Smith's aircraft crashed a half mile from the target. The other pilot reported that he did not see any ejection from Smith's aircraft and no beepers were heard. The following day, an aerial search revealed aircraft wreckage over a large area, however no remains were observed. Due to intense enemy activity in the area, ground forces could not attempt a recovery operation. Smith was declared missing in action as of April 4, 1971.

U.S. and Kingdom of Cambodia teams, with the assistance of the U.S. Embassy's POW/MIA specialists, investigated the loss from 1996 until 2016. During subsequent excavations of the crash site in Kampong Thom Province, teams recovered possible osseous remains and wreckage associated with an F-100D aircraft.

DNA and laboratory analysis was used in the identification of his remains.

The support from the Kingdom of Cambodia was vital to the success of this recovery.
 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 31
, 2017

Army Sgt. Edward Saunders, 27,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. Edward Saunders, 27, of Baltimore, will be buried June 7 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. In February 1951, Saunders was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division. His unit was attached to the Republic of Korea Army’s 16th Regiment to provide support during a planned offensive, when they were attacked by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Force (CPVF) on the night of February 11 and 12. Both units retreated east, joining U.S. units at Saemal, South Korea. The regiment continued to fight the CPVF along the withdrawal route to Hoensong. By the end of the battle, only six soldiers remained. It was during this battle that Saunders became missing in action.

Following the war, one returning American prisoner of war reported that he and Saunders had been captured on Feb. 12, 1951, and that Saunders died sometime in August 1951 in Koksan, North Korea. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Aug. 31, 1951.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which when combined with remains recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea, account for the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the area where Saunders was believed to have died.

To identify Saunders’ remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y- chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auSTR) DNA analysis, which matched a brother; as well as laboratory analysis, including dental, chest x-ray and anthropological analysis, which matched his records; and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 30
, 2017

Army Pfc. Robert E. Mitchell, 19,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pfc. Robert E. Mitchell, 19, of Searcy, Arkansas, will be buried June 3 in Beebe, Arkansas. On Sept. 6, 1950, Mitchell was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit was attacking enemy forces of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) that had penetrated the Naktong Bulge portion of the Pusan Perimeter near Am-sin, South Korea. Following the series of attacks, Mitchell could not be accounted for and was reported missing in action.

During the war, Mitchell was not listed on any Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces or KPA’s prisoner of war lists.

In February and March 1953, an American Graves Registration Service team searched the last-known location for Mitchell, with negative results. Based on the lack of information, the AGRS declared Mitchell non-recoverable.

Additionally, following the war, during “Operation Little/Big Switch,” when the prisoners of war were returned, no repatriated Americans were able to provide any information on Mitchell. Based on the lack of information, the U.S. Army declared Mitchell deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953.

On July 10, 1952, the 565th Graves Registration Company recovered remains from a shallow grave near Hwasan-dong, South Korea, approximately 3.5 miles from where Mitchell was last seen. A local resident reported that he had buried the remains in a foxhole around Sept. 30, 1950. These remains, designated X-5698, were not able to be identified and were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service planned to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Mitchell’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

In late 2014, DPAA disinterred Unknown X-5698 Tanggok, based on research and a tentative name association. Unknown X-5698 was disinterred from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu and accessioned to the DPAA laboratory on May 16, 2016.

To identify Mitchell’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a sister and a nephew, as well as laboratory analysis, including dental, anthropological and chest radiograph comparison analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 22
, 2017

Army Pfc. Thomas C. Stagg, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pfc. Thomas C. Stagg, 21, of Jefferson, Alabama, will be buried May 29 in Birmingham, Alabama. On Nov. 29, 1950, Stagg was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment, on a reconnaissance patrol. The patrol encountered an enemy ambush near Hajoyang-ni, North Korea. During the battle, Stagg was killed in action and his body could not be recovered

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned 208 boxes of commingled human remains to the United States, which we determined to contain the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicate that some of the remains were recovered from the vicinity where Stagg was believed to have died.

To identify Stagg’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a niece and nephew, as well as anthropological analysis and dental analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 22
, 2017

Army Pfc. Everett E. Johnson, 21,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pfc. Everett E. Johnson, 21, of Cincinnati, will be buried May 29 in Madisonville, Ohio. On Sept. 3, 1950, Johnson was a member of Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division located near Taegu, South Korea. Johnson’s company was cut off by enemy penetrations and withdrew to join the rest of the battalion. During the course of the enemy attack, Johnson was killed by enemy fire.

In May 1951, an unidentified set of remains, previously recovered from a mass grave near Pultang, South Korea, was buried in the Tanggok United Nations Military Cemetery and labeled “Unknown X-1072.” No identification of X-1072 could be made, and the remains were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii as an Unknown.

In Dec. 2014, the Department of Defense approved the disinterment of “Unknown X-1072.” The remains were disinterred May 16, 2016 were sent to the laboratory for analysis.

To identify Johnson’s remains, scientists from DPAA used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, as well as dental and chest radiograph comparison analysis, which matched his records.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy Pilot Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
May 22
, 2017

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Frederick P. Crosby, 31,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, killed in the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Frederick P. Crosby, 31, of Lockport, New York, will be buried May 28 in San Diego, California. On June 1, 1965, Crosby was the pilot of an RF-8A aircraft on a bomb damage assessment mission over Thanh Hoa Province, North Vietnam. His aircraft was hit by enemy ground fire while flying at high speed and low altitude over the target area, and crashed. Due to the location of the crash site in hostile territory, the Navy was unable to conduct search operations. The Navy declared Crosby deceased as of June 1, 1965.

After three joint U.S./Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) investigations and witness interviews dating back to 1993, a joint U.S./S.R.V. team excavated a site between October and December 2015, and recovered possible osseous remains and material evidence from an F-8-type aircraft.

In the identification of Crosby, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched a sister, as well as anthropological analysis and circumstantial evidence.
 

The support from the government of Vietnam was vital to the success of this recovery.

 

 

 

 

 

Navy Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 19, 2017

Navy Fireman 3rd Class Glaydon I.C. Iverson, 24

 

Navy Fireman 3rd Class Glaydon I.C. Iverson, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Iverson was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Iverson. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Iverson.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 19
, 2017

Navy Musician 1st Class Elliot D. Larsen, 25,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Musician 1st Class Elliot D. Larsen, 25, of Monroe, Utah, will be buried May 26 in his hometown. On Dec. 7, 1941, Larsen was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Larsen. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Larsen.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Larsen’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a sister and niece, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 19
, 2017

Navy Coxswain Verne F. Knipp, 22,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Coxswain Verne F. Knipp, 22, of Salida, Colorado, will be buried May 26, in Auburn, California. On Dec. 7, 1941, Knipp was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Knipp. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Knipp.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Knipp’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auSTR) DNA analysis, which matched two sisters, a nephew and a niece, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Knipp’s records.

 

Of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, more than 400,000 died during the war.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 19
, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Cpl. Henry Andregg, Jr.

Marine Corps Reserve Cpl. Henry Andregg, Jr., Chattanooga, Tenn, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Andregg was assigned to Company C, 2nd Amphibious Tractor Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Andregg died sometime on the first day of battle, Nov.20, 1943.

The remains were exhumed from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu in October 2016.

Laboratory analysis was used in the identification of his remains.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 19
, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Sam J. Kourkos

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Sam J. Kourkos, Montgomery Kansas, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Kourkos was assigned to Company M, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Kourkos died sometime on the second day of battle, Nov.21, 1943.

The remains were exhumed from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu in October 2016.

Laboratory analysis was used in the identification of his remains.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 15
, 2017

Army Staff Sgt. Michael Aiello, 25

Army Staff Sgt. Michael Aiello, 25,  Sangamon County, Illinois, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In September 1944, Aiello was a member of Company G, 401st Glider Infantry Regiment (GIR), which was attached to the 325th GIR for Operation Market Garden. American and German forces battled in a dense forest in the Netherlands, known as Kiekberg Woods. The battle, which lasted four days, was comprised of ferocious attacks and counterattacks by both sides and resulted in many American losses, including Aiello.

On May 31, 2016, based on research and analysis, remains possibly corresponding to Aiello were disinterred from the Ardennes American Cemetery and sent to the DPAA Laboratory for identification.

Laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 15
, 2017

Army Cpl. Glen E. Kritzwiser,

Army Cpl. Glen E. Kritzwiser, Pike Ohio, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.

In early February 1951, Kritzwiser was a member of Battery C, 15th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, when American units began supporting Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) attacks against units of the Chinese People's Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in an area known as the Central Corridor in North Korea. The support group, known as SF21, provided artillery fire support for the ROKA during its attack north on Hongch'on. On the evening of Feb. 11, 1951, the CPVF launched a massive counterattack against the ROKA. The ROKA withdrew, leaving Kritzwiser's unit and the rest of SF21 behind at Changbong-ni. The SF 21 marched south along Route 29, fighting through ambushes and roadblocks, to Hoengsong and eventually to the city of Wonju. Kritzwiser was reported missing in action as of Feb. 13, 1951 when he did not arrive to report in Wonju.

Glen Kritzwiser was captured during the Korean War and interned as a Prisoner of War. He was not among those returned at the wars end, and is listed as Missing in Action.

On January 7, 2017, based on research and analysis, remains possibly corresponding to Kritzwiser were disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 15
, 2017

Army Cpl. Frank L. Sandoval,

 

Army Cpl. Frank L. Sandoval, Bexar, Texas, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.

In early February 1951, Sandoval was a member of Battery A, 15th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit, as well as other American units, were in operations supporting Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) attacks against the Chinese People's Volunteer Forces (CPFV) in an area known as the Central Corridor in North Korea. The support group, known as Support Force 21 (SF21,) provided artillery fire support while located at Changbong-ni. On Feb. 11, 1951, the CPVF launched a massive counter offensive. The ROKA withdrew, leaving SF21 in Changbong-ni. As the support group withdrew south toward Wonju, they endured continual attacks. Sandoval was reported missing in action as of Feb. 13, 1951, when he did not arrive with the unit in Wonju, was presume Died in Captured.
On January 9, 2017, based on research and analysis, remains possibly corresponding to Sandoval were disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 15
, 2017

Army Cpl. John Lane,

Army Cpl. John Lane, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.

In late July 1950, Lane was assigned to Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division, when the Korean People's Army attacked the city of Chinju, South Korea. The regiment set up defensive positions before withdrawing east to regroup. Upon arrival south of Masan the battalion began accounting for its soldiers and when Lane could not be accounted for, he was reported missing in action as of July 31, 1950.

Remains were disinterred by the Chinju Sanitation Department in 1987 and sent to the Central Identification Laboratory for identification.

Recent technology in DNA and laboratory analysis were used in the
identification of his remains.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 15
, 2017

Army Cpl. Richard Seadore, 24

Army Cpl. Richard Seadore, 24 Brown Nebraska, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.
Richard Seadore was captured during the Korean War and interned as a Prisoner of War. He was not among those returned at the wars end, and is listed as Missing in Action.

In December 1950, Seadore was a member of Company D, 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, when all units of the United Nations Command were moving south after units of the Chinese People's Volunteer Forces (CPVF) staged mass attacks during their Second Phase Offensive. On Dec. 14, the Regiment sent out a reconnaissance patrol. While Seadore's company did not participate in the patrol, they remained in defensive positions north of Uijong-bu, South Korea. The CPVF attacked and penetrated the company's defensive line. As the unit prepared to move the following day, Seadore could not be located and was he was reported absent without leave (AWOL.) His status was later amended to missing in action.

Remains were handed over to the agency on May 28, 1992 and sent to the Central Identification Laboratory (now DPAA) for analysis.

Recent technology advancements in DNA and laboratory analysis were used in the identification of his remains.

 

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 12
, 2017

Army Pfc. Manuel M. Quintana, 19,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pfc. Manuel M. Quintana, 19, of Klondyke, Arizona, will be buried May 19 in Boulder City, Nevada. In late July 1950, Quintana was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 29th Infantry Regiment, when his unit was ordered to move toward Hadong. The regiment unexpectedly encountered enemy forces, who quickly overpowered the American forces. Following the battle, Quintana could not be accounted for and was declared missing in action as of July 27, 1950.

Following the war, no returning American prisoners of war were able to provide any information concerning Quintana’s status.

In December 1950, a set of unidentified remains was recovered from a grave near Chinuju-Hadong Highway. Those remains were buried in the Masan United Nations Military Cemetery as Unknown X-183. In 1951, the graves at Masan cemetery were exhumed and transferred to the U.S. Army’s Central Identification Unit (CIU) in Kokura, Japan, for identification.

Several attempts were made to associate X-183 with unresolved casualties, however with limited technology the remains could be attributed to 41 possibilities. In September 1955 it was determined the remains were “unidentifiable” and were transferred to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the “Punchbowl.”

In December 2014, a family member requested the disinterment of Unknown X-183 based on documents identifying another soldier with tentative association. In May 2016, the grave was exhumed and sent to the DPAA laboratory for identification.

To identify Quintana’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a sister and nephew, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
May 11
, 2017

Air Force Col. William E. Campbell, 37

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Air Force Col. William E. Campbell, 37, of McAllen, Texas, will be buried May 18 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On Jan. 29, 1969, Campbell was a member of the 497th Tactical Fighter Squadron as an aircraft commander in a flight of two F-4Ds on an armed reconnaissance mission over southern Laos. Campbell was cleared to engage a target, and his ordnance was seen impacting the ground. Haze in the area made for difficult visibility but immediately thereafter, aircrews saw a large fireball on the ground in the vicinity of the target. The crewmember on another U.S. aircraft radioed the missing aircraft but received no reply, and no parachutes were seen. Efforts to make contact with Campbell continued until the remaining planes were forced to leave the area due to low fuel. Campbell was subsequently declared missing in action.

Between 1994 and 2011, the Department of Defense conducted nine investigations and excavated a site in both Vietnam and Laos in its attempts to resolve this case. In 2014, residents of Boualapha District, Khammouan Province, in Laos turned over possible human remains and material evidence reportedly recovered from crash sites in the vicinity of Ban Phanop Village, the area where Campbell’s aircraft was lost.

To identify Campbell’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a maternal cousin, as well as dental analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

The support from the governments of Laos and Vietnam were vital to the success of this identification.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 11
, 2017

Army Pfc. Lonnie B.C. Eichelberger, 18.

Army Pfc. Lonnie B.C. Eichelberger, 18, Dallas Texas, missing from World War II, has now been identified.

In February 1942, Eichelberger was a member of Company I, 371st Infantry Regiment, 92nd Infantry Division. In an era of racial segregation, the 92nd ID was the only African-American division to fight in Europe. The division fought at the westernmost portion of the Allied line in northern Italy from November 1944 until April 1945. As part of Operation Fourth Term, Eichelberger's regiment fought in the hills near the town of Strettoia, Italy. His regiment suffered heavy losses while attacking German defenses. Following the battle, Eichelberger could not be accounted for and was declared missing in action on Feb. 10, 1945.

Remains were disinterred from the Florence American Cemetery on June 29, 2016.

Laboratory analysis was used in the identification of his remains.

Eichelberger's name is recorded on the Walls of the Missing at an American Battle Monuments Commission site along with other MIAs from WWII. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 5
, 2017

Army Cpl. George A. Perreault, 20

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. George A. Perreault, 20, of Burlington, Vermont, will be buried May 13 in his hometown. On Feb. 5, 1951, Perreault was a part of Support Force 21 and assigned to Headquarters Battery, 15th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, which was supporting Republic of Korean Army (ROKA) attacks against units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in the area known as the Central Corridor in South Korea. On the evening of February 11, the CPVF launched a massive counterattack against the ROKA regiment. The ROKA withdrew, leaving American units to fight alone at Changbong-ni, until they were forced to withdraw too. After enduring a sustained enemy attack, the Support Force abandoned Hoengsong and moved toward Wonju. Perreault never reported to Wonju and he was reported missing in action on Feb. 13, 1951.

A list provided by the CPVF and Korean People’s Army on Dec. 26, 1951 stated that Perreault died as a prisoner of war, though the information could not be confirmed. Additionally, no returning American prisoners of war immediately following the 1953 Operation Big Switch debriefings could provide any information on him. Based on the lack of information of his status, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Jan. 18, 1954.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which when combined with remains recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea, account for the remains of at least 600 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the area where Perreault was believed to have died.

To identify Perreault’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) and autosomal (auSTR) DNA analysis, which matched a sister and two nieces; as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records; and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
May 5
, 2017

 

Army Cpl. Louis A. Damewood, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Louis A. Damewood, 21, of Carroll County, Maryland, will be buried May 12 in Suffolkk, Virginia. On February 13, 1951, Damewood was a member of Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when he was reported missing in action. The unit was attacking a road block set up by opposing forces near Hoengsong, South Korea, when he was declared missing.

In 1953, a returning American prisoner of war reported that Damewood had died in Changsong prisoner of war camp in June 1951. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of June 13, 1951.
DAMEWOOD, Louis A. CH Cpl RA13174220 HQ Co 38th Inf Carroll MD POW

In 1954, United Nations and communist forces exchanged the remains of war dead in what came to be called “Operation Glory.” All remains recovered in Operation Glory were turned over to the Army’s Central Identification Unit for analysis. The unidentified remains were interred as unknowns at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the “Punchbowl.” One set of remains was designated “Unknown X-14160.”

On Nov. 6, 2013, the remains designated as X-14160 were exhumed and sent to the central identification laboratory for analysis.

To identify Damewood’s remains, scientists from DPAA used dental, chest radiograph comparison and anthropological analyses, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 5
, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class William H. Kennedy, 24

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Fireman 1st Class William H. Kennedy, 24, of Titonka, Iowa, will be buried May 12 in his hometown. On Dec. 7, 1941, Kennedy was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Kennedy. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Kennedy.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Kennedy’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a niece and a great grand nephew, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
May 5
, 2017

Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Harry H. Gaver, Jr., 24

 

The remains of Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Harry H. Gaver, Jr., 24, Los Angeles, CA.  killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Gaver was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Gaver. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu'uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Gaver.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
May 4
, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve 1st Lt. William C. Ryan, Jr., 25

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Marine Corps Reserve 1st Lt. William C. Ryan, Jr., 25, of Hoboken, New Jersey, will be buried May 10 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On May 11, 1969, Ryan was the radar intercept officer of an F-4B aircraft, assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Force 115, Marine Aircraft Group 13, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force Pacific, on a combat mission over Savannakhet Province, Laos. While pulling out of a bombing pass, the aircraft was hit by enemy fire. The pilot lost control and called several times for Ryan, but received no response. The pilot ejected before the aircraft crashed, and other members of the flight only witnessed one parachute leave the aircraft. The location of the crash site precluded a search and recovery effort, but the pilot was rescued. Ryan was declared deceased as of May 11, 1969.

From January 1990 until May 2012, joint teams from the U.S., the Lao People’s Democratic Republic and the Vietnamese Office for Seeking Missing Persons interviewed numerous witnesses to the crash, gathering information regarding Ryan’s loss.

From May 2012 until January 2016, joint teams made six trips to complete a difficult excavation of a crash site associated with Ryan’s loss, near Ban Alang Noi, recovering life support items, aircraft wreckage and possible human remains. On Feb. 17, 2016, the remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Ryan’s remains, scientists from DPAA used dental comparisons, including isotope analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

The support from the government of Laos was vital to the success of this recovery.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 27, 2017

Army Cpl. Freddie L. Henson, 19,

Army Cpl. Freddie L. Henson, 19, of Klamath Falls, Oregon, will be buried May 4 in Houston. In late November 1950, Henson was a member of Battery A, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By Dec. 5, only 385 of the approximately 3,200 Americans and South Koreans assigned to the 31st RCT were still fit for duty. As the 57th FA BN accounted for its men from the battles, Henson was reported missing as of Dec. 6.

Henson’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no repatriated Americans were able to provide any information concerning Henson as a prisoner of war. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Colley’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

During the 36th Joint Recovery Operation in 2004, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern bank of the Chosin Reservoir, Changjin County, North Korea, based on information provided a Korean witness. The site was in the vicinity of Twikkae Village. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least five individuals.

To identify Henson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) and Y chromosome (Y-STR) DNA analysis, which matched a brother and a sister, as well as circumstantial and anthropological evidence, which matched his records.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Accounted For
 April 21, 2017

Marine Corps 2nd Lt. George S. Bussa, 29,

Marine Corps 2nd Lt. George S. Bussa, 29, Chicago, Illinois has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Bussa was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Bussa died sometime on the first day of battle, Nov.
20, 1943.

The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

Laboratory analysis was used in the identification of his remains.

(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 21, 2017

Navy Fireman 3rd Class Robert N. Walkowiak, 20

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Fireman 3rd Class Robert N. Walkowiak, 20, of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, will be buried April 28 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu. On Dec. 7, 1941, Walkowiak was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Walkowiak. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Walkowiak.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Walkowiak’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a niece, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 20, 2017

Navy Ensign Verdi D. Sederstrom, 25,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Ensign Verdi D. Sederstrom, 25, of Montevideo, Minnesota, will be buried April 26, in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. On Dec. 7, 1941, Sederstrom was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Sederstrom. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Sederstrom.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Sederstrom’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched two nieces and a nephew, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Sederstrom’s records.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 19, 2017

Army Pvt. Walter F. Piper

Army Pvt. Walter F. Piper,  Philadelphia, PA. has now been accounted for.

Piper, assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, was reported missing in action, Feb. 13, 1951 in North Korea.

Interment services are pending.
(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 17, 2017

Seaman 1st Class Milton R. Surratt, 21,

 

Seaman 1st Class Milton R. Surratt, 21, Greenville County, South Carolina,  has now been accounted for.

Surratt, assigned to the USS Oklahoma, was killed Dec. 7, 1941 in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The Oklahoma was moored in Battleship Row on 7 December 1941, when the Japanese attacked. Oklahoma took three torpedo hits almost immediately after the first Japanese bombs fell. Within 12 minutes after the attack began, she had rolled over until halted by her masts touching bottom, her starboard side above water, and a part of her keel exposed.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 14, 2017

Army Pfc. Kenneth R. Miller, 23,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Pfc. Kenneth R. Miller, 23, of East Cleveland, Ohio, will be buried April 21 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu. On April 23, 1951, Miller was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division, when his unit was forced to withdraw from their position while fighting the Chinese Communist Forces (CCF). Miller was reported missing in action following the withdrawal.

The Army Graves Registration Service attempted to account for the losses suffered during the battle, but searches yielded no results for Miller.

Repatriated American prisoners of war reported that Miller died while in captivity at POW Camp 1, Changsong, North Korea in September 1951. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared Miller deceased as of Sept. 22, 1951.

In 1954, United Nations and communist forces exchanged the remains of war dead in what came to be called “Operation Glory.” All remains recovered in Operation Glory were turned over to the Army’s Central Identification Unit for analysis. The remains they were unable to identify were interred as unknowns at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the “Punchbowl.”

In 1999, due to advances in technology, the Department of Defense began to re-examine records and concluded that the possibility for identification of some of these unknowns now existed. The remains designated X-14138 were exhumed on August 20, 2015, so further analysis could be conducted.

To identify Miller’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used anthropological, dental and chest radiograph comparison analysis; mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched an uncle and a cousin; as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 14, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Michael Galajdik, 25,

 

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Fireman 1st Class Michael Galajdik, 25, of Joliet, Illinois, will be buried April 22 in Elwood, Illinois. On Dec. 7, 1941, Galajdik was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Galajdik. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Galajdik.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Galajdik’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched two nieces and a nephew, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 14, 2017

Army Pfc. Richard A. Lucas

Army Pfc. Richard A. Lucas has now been accounted for.

Lucas, of Company C, 1st Battalion 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, was reported Missing in Action, Nov. 26, 1950, in North Korea.

Interment services are pending.

(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From World War II Accounted For
 April 14, 2017

Army Air Forces Pvt. Harold S. Hirschi, 18,

Army Air Forces Pvt. Harold S. Hirschi, 18, has now been accounted for.


Pvt . Harold S. Hirschi, 18, Oklahoma City, a prisoner of the Japanese since the fall of Bataan, died at a prison camp in the Philippines according to a War Department.
 

Hirschi, of Headquarters Squadron, 19th Bombardment Group, died Nov. 19, 1942 in the Philippines.
 

Interment services are pending.

(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 14, 2017

Army Cpl. Leslie R. Sutton,

 

Army Cpl. Leslie R. Sutton, Rochelle, GA. has now been accounted for.

Sutton, of Battery C, 99th Field Artillery Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division was reported missing in action, Nov. 2, 1950, in North Korea.

Interment services are pending.

(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 13, 2017

 

Army Sgt. 1st Class Richard G. Cushman, 19,

Army Sgt. 1st Class Richard G. Cushman, 19, Bingham, Idaho has now been accounted for.

Cushman, of Company A, 72nd Medium Tank Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, was reported missing in action Dec. 5, 1950 in North Korea.
Richard Cushman was captured during the Korean War and interned as a Prisoner of War. He was not among those returned at the war's end, and is listed as Missing in Action.

DPAA appreciates the Korean People's Army, as well as Korean witnesses Mr. Man Hyon Ho and Mr. Anh Il Chang, for their assistance and partnership in this recovery effort.

Silver Star to Sergeant First Class Richard G. Cushman , United States Army, for gallantry in action as a member of Company A, 72d Tank Battalion, 2d Infantry Division, in action against an armed enemy from 1 to 4 September 1950 in the vicinity of Yongsan, Korea. He also received the Prisoner of War Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Korean Service Medal, Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, United Nations Service Medal, and Republic of Korea War Service Medal.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From World War II Accounted For
 April 12, 2017

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Marvin B. Rothman, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from World War II, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Marvin B. Rothman, 21, of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, will be buried April 19 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On April 11, 1944, Rothman was assigned to the 311th Fighter Squadron, 58th Fighter Group, and was the pilot of a single-seat P-47D Thunderbolt, on a bombing escort mission with 15 other Thunderbolts to Wewak, Territory of New Guinea, when he was attacked by enemy fighter aircraft. When the escort flight returned from the mission, Rothman and two other P-47D pilots were reported missing. The War Department declared Rothman deceased as of Feb. 6, 1946.

In September 1946, a U.S. infantry officer informed the American Graves Registration Service in Finschhafen, New Guinea, that an Australian War Graves team had recovered remains of a suspected American airman from the wreckage of an aircraft with a partial serial number correlating to Rothman’s plane.

In November 1946, AGRS personnel examined the remains and subsequently tried to confirm the identity based on dental records. However, the dental charts were incomplete and an identification could not be established.

Based on the lack of conclusive evidence, in January 1950, an AGRS board declared Rothman to be non-recoverable.

In July 2004, a contractor for the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command investigated a crash site found by local residents of Suanum Village, East Sepik Province, Paupa New Guinea, finding material evidence an aircraft data plate matching the serial number of Rothman’s plane. A U.S. recovery team returned to the site in August 2009 and recovered possible human remains and other artifacts.

To identify Rothman’s remains, scientists from DPAA used anthropological and circumstantial evidence, as well as dental analysis, which matched Rothman’s records.

 

 

 

 

Missing Solider From World War II Identified
 
April 10, 2017

U.S. Army  John Kovach, Jr. 20

The remains of U.S. Army Technician 4th Grade John Kovach, Jr., 20, Gypsum, Ohio, have now been accounted for.

Kovach was assigned to Company C, 192nd Tank Battalion, when he died Nov. 19, 1942 in the Philippines.

Interment services are pending.

(No further information at this time)

 

 

 

 

Soldiers Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
April 10, 2017

                                              

Capt. John A. House, II; 28             Lance Cpl. John D. Killen, III;19                Cpl. Glyn L. Runnels, Jr. 21

The remains of Marine Corps Capt. John A. House, II; 28, Pelham, NY.     Lance Cpl. John D. Killen, III; 19, Des Moines IA.    and Cpl. Glyn L. Runnels, Jr., 21, Birmingham AL, have now been accounted for.

House was assigned to HHM-265 Marine Aircraft Group 16, and Killen and Runnels were assigned to Company A, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Division, when their aircraft crashed in Vietnam, June 30, 1967.

Two additional service members were previously identified from this crash, Marine Lance Cpl. Merlin R. Allen and Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael B. Judd. Their remains were returned to their families for burial with full military honors.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 10, 2017

Navy Reserve Ensign William M. Thompson,

 

Navy Reserve Ensign William M. Thompson, Mountain Lakes, NJ  has now been accounted for.

Thompson, assigned on the OKLAHOMA, BB-37, battleship, aircraft torpedo attack, sunk, raised and scrapped;
415 men killed, 32 wounded, 32 trapped survivors rescued from upturned hull; 429 men in USNM log.

The Oklahoma was moored in Battleship Row on 7 December 1941, when the Japanese attacked. Oklahoma took three torpedo hits almost immediately after the first Japanese bombs fell. Within 12 minutes after the attack began, she had rolled over until halted by her masts touching bottom, her starboard side above water, and a part of her keel exposed.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 10, 2017

3rd Class Don Ocle Neher

Electrician's Mate 3rd Class Don Ocle Neher, from Wichita,  Kansas has now been accounted for.

Aassigned to the USS Oklahoma, was killed Dec. 7, 1941 during the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Mate 3rd Class Don O. Neher was on the OKLAHOMA, BB-37, battleship, aircraft torpedo attack, sunk, raised and scrapped;
415 men killed, 32 wounded, 32 trapped survivors rescued from upturned hull; 429 men in USNM log.

The Oklahoma was moored in Battleship Row on 7 December 1941, when the Japanese attacked. Oklahoma took three torpedo hits almost immediately after the first Japanese bombs fell. Within 12 minutes after the attack began, she had rolled over until halted by her masts touching bottom, her starboard side above water, and a part of her keel exposed.

Interment services are pending.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Solider From World War II Identified
 
April 7, 2017

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Ewart T. Sconiers, 29

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Ewart T. Sconiers, 29, from DeFuniak Springs, Florida missing from World War II, has now been identified.

On Oct. 21, 1942, Sconiers was a member of the 414th Bombardment Squadron, 97th Bombardment Group, serving as the bombardier on the B-17F Flying Fortress, during a mission to bomb the German U-boat pens at Lorient, France. During the attack, the aircraft received severe damage, but the entire crew parachuted safely, landing in water near Brest, France, where they were picked up by a French fishing vessel and turned over to German forces as prisoners of war. The Americans were sent to Dulag Luft in Oberusal, Germany for interrogation, and on Nov. 11, 1942, Sconiers was transferred to Stalag Luft II in Sagan, Germany (present-day Zagan, Poland), where he remained until Jan 9, 1944.

Sconiers was reported to have died Jan. 24, 1944.

In 2015, during an independent investigation, a headstone with Sconiers name was identified in Poland. The remains were disinterred in 2016 and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
April 6, 2017

Machinist's Mate 1st Class Fred M. Jones, 30

Remains of Machinist Mate First Class Fred M. Jones, 30 of Port Huron, Michigan killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Jones was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Jones. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu'uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Jones.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 


 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 6, 2017

Army Cpl. Daniel F. Kelly

Army Cpl. Daniel F. Kelly, Allegheny, Pennsylvania, missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

In late November 1950, Kelly was a member of C Company, 1st Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit was ordered to advance as part of preparations for an offensive to push the North Koreans to the Yalu River. By the night of November 25, the Chinese People's Volunteer Forces (CPVF) had begun relentless attacks which continued throughout the night and into the next morning. After the battle, it was determined that Kelly became Missing in Action on Nov. 26, 1950.

In 2002, a joint U.S. and Korean People's Army recovery team conducted operations in North Korea, recovering possible remains.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Identified
 
April 5, 2017

Marine Corps Pfc. James O. Whitehurst, 20,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Marine Corps Pfc. James O. Whitehurst, 20, of Ashford, Alabama, will be buried April 12, in Cowarts, Alabama. In November 1943, Whitehurst was assigned to Company E, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Whitehurst died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Whitehurst’s remains were not recovered.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

To identify Whitehurst’s remains, scientists from DPAA used dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Identified
 
April 4, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Jack J. Fox

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Jack J. Fox, unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

In November 1943, Fox was assigned to Company L, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Fox died sometime on the third day of battle, Nov. 22, 1943.

In November 1946, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company began disinterment to bring the remains to Oahu for identification at the Central Identification Laboratory. In 1949 and 1950, the remains that could not be identified were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific ("Punchbowl") in Honolulu.

In October 2016, set of remains were exhumed from the Punchbowl and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing From World War II Identified
 
April 4, 2017

Army Pfc. Reece Gass, 21

Army Pfc. Reece Gass, 21, from Chattanooga, TN unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

On Jan. 14, 1945, Gass was a member of Company E, 33rd Armored Regiment, 3rd Armored Division, moving from the Lomre area toward Cherain, Belgium, in a three-pronged advance against enemy forces. As fighting drove them back, five tanks from the regiment were lost, including at least two from Gass' company. Gass was reported to have been killed in action after his tank was hit by enemy fire.

In May 2016, DPAA disinterred Unknown X-5867 in the Luxembourg American Cemetery and sent the remains to the DPAA laboratory for identification.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in his identification.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Missing From World War II Identified
 
April 4, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Jack J. Fox,

Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Jack J. Fox, unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

In November 1943, Fox was assigned to Company L, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Fox died sometime on the third day of battle, Nov. 22, 1943.

In November 1946, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company began disinterment to bring the remains to Oahu for identification at the Central Identification Laboratory. In 1949 and 1950, the remains that could not be identified were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific ("Punchbowl") in Honolulu.

In October 2016, set of remains were exhumed from the Punchbowl and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
April 3, 2017

Army Master Sgt. Joseph Durakovich, 30,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Master Sgt. Joseph Durakovich, 30, of Gary, Indiana, will be buried April in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. In late November 1950, Durakovich was a member of Company G, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, establishing a defensive position in Pongmyong-ni east of Kuni-ri, North Korea, when they were attacked by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF). The Americans were continually attacked as they withdrew along the main supply route to Samso-ri, and they encountered a roadblock they could not break through. Following the battle, Durakovich could not be accounted for and was reported missing in action on Nov. 28, 1950.

Durakovich’s name did not appear on any POW list provided by the CPVF or the North Korean People’s Army, and no returning American POWs provided any information concerning Durakovich as a possible prisoner of war. Based on this information, a military review board amended his status to deceased in 1953.

In August and September 2002, a Joint U.S. and Korean People’s Army recovery team conducted a Joint Recovery Operation at a site in Ung Bong, Village, North Korea, based on information provided by two Korean witnesses. The site was approximately 30 kilometers from where Durakovich was last seen. During the excavation, the team recovered material evidence and possible human remains.

To identify Durakovich’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial and Y-chromosome short tandem repeat DNA analysis, which matched a niece and grandson, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Army Sgt. Homer R. Abney, 24,

 

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. Homer R. Abney, 24,, 24, of Dallas, will be buried April 7 in his hometown. In late November, 1950, Abney was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit was fighting units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces in North Korea. By the early morning of Nov. 30, the road from Kunu-ri to Sunch’on was heavily fortified with a series of enemy roadblocks, later named “The Gauntlet.” The regiment sustained more casualties than any other unit during the battle, and it was following that battle that Abney was declared missing.

The CPVF and North Korean People’s Army periodically provided lists of prisoners of war during the war, but none listed Abney. Following the war, three returning American prisoners reported that Abney died at Hofong Camp in March 1951. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of March 31, 1951.

In April and May 2005, a Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (now DPAA) and Korea People’s Army Recovery Team, conducted the 37th Joint Field Activity, visiting a site near Pukchin-Tarigol Prisoner of war camp. Possible human remains were found, but the condition of the site indicated it was a second burial site.

To identify Abney’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched a sister and maternal niece, as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Air Force Capt. Robert R. Barnett, 32,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Air Force Capt. Robert R. Barnett, 32, of Gladewater. Texas, will be buried April 7, 2017 in Austin, Texas. On April 7, 1966, Barnett was a member of the 8th Bomb Squadron, and was the pilot of a B-57B aircraft on a strike mission over Laos. While making a dive-bombing attack, the aircraft reportedly crashed, disintegrated and burned. No parachutes were seen and the hostile threat in the area prevented a search and rescue or ground inspection of the site. Following the crash, Barnett was declared killed in action.

In January and May 2005, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic (L.P.D.R.) team visited the site of the crash. In late 2014, and early 2015, three excavations of the site were conducted, recovering possible human remains, life support items and material evidence. The remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Barnett’s remains, scientists from DPAA used circumstantial evidence and dental comparisons, which matched his records.

The support from the government of Laos was vital to the success of this recovery.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Army Cpl. William R. Sadewasser,

Army Cpl. William R. Sadewasser, unaccounted for from the Korean War, has now been identified.

In late November, 1950, Sadewasser was a member of Headquarters Battery, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By Dec. 6,
the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Because Sadewasser could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Nov. 28, 1950.

During the 32nd Joint Recovery Operation in 2004, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern side of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, on Hill 1221. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least 11 individuals.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Army Cpl. James T. Mainhart, 19,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. James T. Mainhart, 19, of Butler, Pennsylvania, will be buried April 8 in his hometown. In late November 1950, Mainhart was a member of Company I, 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By Dec. 6, the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. When the unit withdrew from the east side of the Chosin Reservoir. Mainhart’s body could not be evacuated. He was reported killed in action as of Nov. 30, 1950.

Mainhart’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no repatriated Americans were able to provide any information concerning Mainhart as a prisoner of war. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Nov. 30, 1950.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Mainhart’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

In September and October 2004, personnel from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (now DPAA), conducted the 36th Joint Recovery Operation with the Korean People’s Army in the vicinity of the Chosin River. During the mission, a witness statement reported that remains believed to be American had been found and reburied. Recovery Team 2 found a site that contained material evidence and possible remains of at least five individuals.

To identify Mainhart’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y-chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a brother and nephew, as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Civilian Missing From World War II Identified
 
March 30, 2017

Mr. Peter W. Atkinson, 25,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. civilian, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Mr. Peter W. Atkinson, 25, of Berkley Springs, West Virginia, will be buried April 8 in Martinsburg, West Virginia. In mid-1941, Atkinson, formerly in the U.S. Army Air Corps Reserve, was recruited to be among a small group of American pilots to battle Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Atkinson was training with other AVG pilots at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instituted an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Atkinson was killed during a training flight on Oct. 25, 1941, when his plane was reported to have disintegrated in a dive. He was reportedly buried in the Airmen’s Cemetery at St. Luke’s Anglican Church in Toungoo.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-635, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, as World War II Unknowns.

On April 11, 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-635 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Atkinson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a sister and four nephews; as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Navy Seaman 1st Class Murry R. Cargile, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Seaman 1st Class Murry R. Cargile, 21, of Robersonville, North Carolina, will be buried April 7 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, in Honolulu. On Dec. 7, 1941, Cargile was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Cargile. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Cargile.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Cargile’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial and Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat DNA analysis, which matched two brothers and a sister, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Cargile’s records.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 30, 2017

Navy Seaman 2nd Class Vernon N. Grow, 25,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Navy Seaman 2nd Class Vernon N. Grow, 25, of Redding, California, will be buried April 7 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu. On Dec. 7, 1941, Grow was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in 429 casualties, including Grow.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Grow.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Grow’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched his cousins, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Grow’s records.

 

 

 

 

 Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 29, 2017

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Robert E. Moessner, 24

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from World War II, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Robert E. Moessner, 24, of Scranton, Pennsylvania, will be buried April 5 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On April 18, 1944, Moessner was the bombardier of a B-24 aircraft out of Kwelin, China, and was shot down near Hong Kong, along with eleven other crewmembers onboard. The aircraft had been conducting a sea sweep and encountered a Japanese merchant ship and escorting destroyer. After making two passes, they withdrew under heavy fire, but were subsequently shot down by Japanese fighters. The pilot crashed the aircraft into shallow water of Hong Kong harbor, and it broke apart. Two crewmembers survived and were captured by the Japanese. Upon their release at the conclusion of the war, they reported that Moessner went down with the aircraft.

In the days following the crash, the Japanese salvaged the wreckage and recovered two bodies. Local residents also found bodies near the shore. At the end of hostilities, Army Graves Registration Service (AGRS) recovered the remains and took them into custody. Three sets were eventually identified and the fourth was buried as an “Unknown” in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii.

In August 2005, based on advances in DNA technology the grave was exhumed and sent to the lab for analysis.
To identify Moessner’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used circumstantial evidence, as well Next-Generation Sequencing to make a mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) match to a maternal family member
 

 

 

 

 

 Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 29, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Capt. James W. Boyden, 23

 

Marine Corps Reserve Capt. James W. Boyden, 23, Whittier California,  missing from World War II, has now been identified. 

On Feb. 14, 1944, Boyden was a member of the Marine Torpedo Bombing Squadron 233, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force, as the pilot of a Grumann torpedo bomber on an experimental mission to destroy enemy shipping in Simpson Harbor, New Britain. The mission included 26 bombers deploying aircraft-borne mines to disrupt the flow of men and material to the sprawling Japanese base at Rabaul. Boyden's plane took off at 2:30 in the morning as part of the last wave of attacking torpedo bombers. Once over the harbor, the American aircraft encountered intense anti-aircraft fire and sustained heavy losses. At the end of the battle, six bombers and their 18
crewman failed to return from their mission, including Boyden who was presenting the Distinguished Flying Cross.

On Feb. 15, 1945, War Department officials declared Boyden deceased. The American Battle Monuments Commission memorialized Boyden and the other missing crewmen by inscribing their names on the Walls of the Missing, Manila American Cemetery and Memorial.

In 2016, personnel from DPAA conducted an excavation of a possible crash site and sent the remains to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the
identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 27, 2017

Army Sgt. Donald D. Noehren, 23

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. Donald D. Noehren, 23, of Harlan, Iowa, will be buried April 3 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. In late November 1950, Noehren was a member of Headquarters and Headquarters Service Company, 2nd Engineer Combat Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, fighting units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in North Korea, in a delaying action south from the Ch’ongch’on River to Kunu-ri. The unit was ordered to withdraw, and encountered a number of heavily defended enemy roadblocks, continuous enemy mortar, small arms and machine-gun fire. Many soldiers, including Noehren, were captured. He was declared missing in action as of Nov. 30, 1950.

Noehren’s name did not appear on any POW list provided by the CPVF or the North Korean People’s Army, however two repatriated American prisoners of war reported that Noehren died at Hofong Camp, part of Pukchin-Tarigol Camp Cluster, on Jan. 22, 1951. Based on this information, a military review board amended Noehren’s status to deceased in 1951 Died while being captured.

In April and May of 2005, a Joint Recovery Team conducted the 37th Joint Field Activity in Unsan County, South Pyongan Province, North Korea. On April 19, the team visited a site reported by a local witness to contain American remains.

To identify Noehren’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched a brother, sister and nephew, as well as anthropological analysis, which matched his records and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 27, 2017

Seaman 1st Class Monroe Temple

Remains of Seaman 1st Class Monroe Temple, Des Moines, Iowa  killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Temple was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Temple. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu'uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not
be identified as non-recoverable, including Temple.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 21, 2017

Army Cpl. Jules Hauterman, Jr., 19,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Jules Hauterman, Jr., 19, of Hampden, Massachusetts, will be buried March 31 in Holyoke, Massachusetts. In late November, 1950, Hauterman was a medic with the Medical Platoon, 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division, when his unit was attached to the 31st Regimental Combat Team as one of its infantry battalions for the mission. The 31st RCT advanced to occupy the east side of the Chosin River. For four days, the unit battled the 80th Division of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF). The 31st RCT finally conducted a fighting withdraw south for relative safety at the Marine Base in Hagaru-ri. The convoy was eventually destroyed by the CPVF, and while some escaped across the frozen reservoir, more than 1,300 were captured or killed. Following the battle, Hauterman could not be accounted for and he was reported missing in action as of Dec. 2, 1950.

The CPVF and North Korean People’s Army periodically provided lists of prisoners of war during the war, but none listed Hauterman. Additionally, no returning American prisoners of war reported to have any information regarding Hauterman as a prisoner of war. Based on the lack of information regarding his status, the U.S. Army declared him deceased.

On Sept. 15, 1954, a set of remains reportedly recovered from the East Chosin Reservoir were sent to the Central Identification Laboratory in Kokura, Japan and attempted to make an identification. The remains, identified as X-15904, were declared unidentifiable in 1955, and were transferred to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

On June 13, 2016, the remains identified as “Unknown X-15904” were disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis

To identify Hauterman’s remains, scientists from DPAA used laboratory analysis, to include dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From World War II Accounted For
March 21, 2017

Army Air Forces Capt. Albert L. Schlegel, 25

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces Capt. Albert L. Schlegel, 25, of Cleveland, Ohio, will be buried March 30 in Beaufort, South Carolina. On Aug. 28, 1944, Schlegel was the pilot and sole occupant of a P-51D Mustang aircraft, departing his base in England on a ground strafing mission to Strasbourg, France, when he radioed that he had been hit by heavy anti-aircraft fire and would need to bail from his aircraft. There was no further communication from Schlegel. Historical records indicated that locals in Valmy, France reported that an unknown American aviator was captured in their village that same evening.

On Nov. 18, 1944, a set of remains was found near a train station in Valmy. The remains were transferred to the temporary American cemetery at Champigueul, and designated as X-73. On Dec. 6, 1948, the American Graves Registration Command declared the remains unidentifiable. He was interred in the Epinal American Cemetery in France under a headstone that read “Here Rests in Honored Glory a Comrade in Arms Known but to God.”

In January 2016, DPAA researchers determined that through advanced forensic technology, the remains might be identified, and X-73 was disinterred and the remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory in Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, for identification.

To identify Schlegel’s remains, scientists from DPAA used laboratory analysis, including dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

DPAA is grateful to the American Battle Monuments Commission for their assistance, support and care of his burial site. Additionally, Schlegel’s name is recorded on the Walls of the Missing at an ABMC site along with nearly 79,000 other MIAs from WWII. A rosette will be placed next to his name, to indicate he has been accounted for.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 21, 2017

Army Cpl. Joseph N. Pelletier, 20,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Joseph N. Pelletier, 20, of Berlin, New Hampshire, will be buried March 28 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. In early February 1951, Pelletier was a member of Headquarters Battery, 15th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit began supporting Republic of Korea (ROK) Army attacks against units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in an area known as the Central Corridor in North Korea. On February 11, the CPVF launched a massive counterattack against the ROK regiment causing them to withdraw, leaving the American units to fight the CPVF at Changbong-ni. The CPVF attacked the Americans on February 12, causing them to withdraw south to Hoengsong. They eventually moved to Wonju, but Pelletier never reported in. The U.S. Army declared him missing in action as of Feb. 13, 1951.

Pelletier's name appeared on a list provided by the CPVF and Korean People's Army as a prisoner of war and returning American prisoners of war reported that Pelletier had been a prisoner and died sometime in April 1951 at the "Bean Camp." Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of April 30, 1951.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned 208 boxes of commingled human remains to the United States, which we determined to contain the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. On May 13, 1992, they turned over 15 boxes of remains. These remains were reportedly recovered from Namjong-gu, Suan County, North Hwanghae Province, where Pelletier was believed to have died.

To identify Pelletier’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA),Y chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auSTR) DNA analysis, which matched three brothers; as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records; and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
March 21, 2017

Marine Pvt. Harry K. Tye, 21,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Marine Pvt. Harry K. Tye, 21, of Orinoco, Kentucky, will be buried March 28 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. In November 1943, Tye was assigned to Company E, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Tye died sometime on the first day of battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

The battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio Island, but Tye’s remains were not recovered. On Feb. 28, 1949, a military review board declared Tye’s remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

To identify Tye’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) analysis, which matched a nephew; laboratory analysis, including dental analysis and anthropological comparison, which matched Tye’s records; as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
March 17, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve Pvt. Donald S. Spayd

Marine Corps Reserve Pvt. Donald S. Spayd, from California  unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

In November 1943, Spayd was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Spayd died sometime on the first day of battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the
identification of his remains.

DPAA is grateful to History Flight, Inc., for this recovery mission.

 

 

 

 

Missing Airmen From World War II Accounted For
March 16, 2017

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. John D. Mumford, 22,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. John D. Mumford, 22, of St. Petersburg, Florida, will be buried March 23 in his hometown. On June 6, 1944, Mumford, while serving with the 318th Fighter Squadron, 325th Fighter Group, 15th Air Force, flew his last mission as the pilot and sole occupant of a P-51C “Mustang” fighter. Mumford and other pilots of the 325th Fighter Group were assigned escort duty, accompanying and protecting a flight of B-17 “Flying Fortress” bombers of the 5th Bombardment Wing on their mission to bomb and destroy a German occupied airfield at Galati, Romania. After successfully completing the bombing mission, the bombers and their escort fighters came under attack by German fighters. Mumford was last seen by fellow pilots in pursuit of two German fighters. Later, villagers of Novotroyan- present day Novi Troyany- Ukraine, observed two aircraft with U.S. markings pursued by several German aircraft. One of the U.S. aircraft crashed in a nearby field.

In 2008 and 2010, personnel from predecessor organizations of DPAA visited the village of Novi Troyany, interviewing witnesses to the crash, correlating it to Mumford’s loss, and surveying the site of the crash to prepare for future excavation

In July and August 2016, DPAA, jointly with the Ukraine Armed Forces and the National Museum of Military History of Ukraine, excavated the crash site.

To identify Mumford’s remains, scientists from DPAA used anthropological analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

 

Civilian Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 16, 2017

Mr. Maax C. Hammer, Jr., 25,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. civilian, unaccounted for since World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Mr. Maax C. Hammer, Jr., 25, of Cairo, Illinois, will be buried March 21in Carbondale, Illinois. In mid-1941, Hammer, formerly in the U.S. Army Air Corps Reserve, was recruited among a small group of American pilots battling Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Hammer was training with other AVG pilots at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instituted an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Hammer was killed during a training flight on Sept. 22, 1941, when he encountered severe weather and his plane crashed. Hammer was reportedly buried in the Airmen’s Cemetery at St. Luke’s Anglican Church in Toungoo.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-635, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, as World War II Unknowns.

On April 11, 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-634 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Hammer’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched a cousin; as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 16, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles R. Casto, 21

Remains of Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles R. Casto, 21 from East Liverpool, Ohio  was killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Casto was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Casto. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu'uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Casto.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 15, 2017

Army Pfc. Robert E. Mitchell, 19

Army Pfc. Robert E. Mitchell,19,  from Beebe, Arkansas missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

On Sept. 6, 1950, Mitchell was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit was attacking enemy forces of the Korean People's Army that had penetrated the Naktong Bulg portion of the Pusan Perimeter near Am-sin, South Korea. Following the series of attacks, Mitchell could not be accounted for and was reported missing in action.

In late 2014, Mitchell's family requested the disinterment of Unknown X-5698 Tanggok, based on a tentative name association. Unknown X-5698 was disinterred from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu and accessioned to the DPAA laboratory on May 16, 2016.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 10, 2017

Army Cpl. Billie J. Jimerson,

Army Cpl. Billie J. Jimerson, Navarro Texas, missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

In late November, 1950, Jimerson was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, when his unit engaged with opposing forces near Anju, North Korea. He was reported missing in action as of Nov. 28, 1950, when he could not be accounted for.

Corporal Billie J. Jimerson ( United States Army, was held as a Prisoner of War after he was captured on 28 November 1950 during the Korean War. He was  is presumed to have died or been killed while in captivity.

In September 1954, a set of remains reportedly recovered from a prisoner of war cemetery at Camp 5 were sent to the Central Identification Unit in Japan for attempted identification and further processing. This set of remains was designated X-14400, and was determined unidentifiable in November 1955.

In February 2014 the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency requested the disinterment of Unknown X-14400. In June 2014, X-14400 was disinterred from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific and accessioned into the laboratory.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 9, 2017

U.S. Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Robert E. Oxford,

U.S. Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Robert E. Oxford, Concord, GA unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

On Jan. 25, 1944, Oxford was a member of 425th Bomber Squadron, 308th Bomb Group, 14th Air Force, and was aboard a B-24J Liberator aircraft, departing Kunming, China, on a supply mission to Chabua, India. Despite initially favorable weather, conditions deteriorated rapidly and the aircraft failed to arrive at its destination. Four additional aircraft were also lost during their approach to Chabua. Due to the inability to pinpoint a loss location, no search efforts were initiated. The following day, the War Department Adjutant General's Office issued a finding of death for the servicemen onboard.

The American Battle Monuments Commission memorialized Oxford by including his name on the Tablets of the Missing, Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, the Philippines.

On April 14, 2016, evidence recovered during field excavations were received and accessioned into the DPAA Laboratory for scientific analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 9, 2017

Army Sgt. Willie Rowe, 39

Army Sgt. Willie Rowe, missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

In late November 1950, Rowe was a member of L Company, 3rd Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his unit was ordered to advance north towards the Ch'ongch'on River region of North Korea, as part of preparations for an offensive to push the North Koreans to the Yala River. By the night of November 25, the Chinese People's Volunteer Forces (CPVF) had begun relentless attacks which continued throughout the night and into the next morning. After the battle, Rowe was declared missing, on Nov. 25, 1950.

In May 2005 the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (a predecessor to DPAA) Central Identification laboratory received and accessioned recovered remains from a site south of the Pukchin-Tarigol POW Camp Cluster. Currently, 11 individuals recovered from the site have been identified.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence, were used in his identification.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 9, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Elmer T. Kerestes, 31

Remains of Navy Fireman 1st Class Elmer T. Kerestes, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Kerestes was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Kerestes. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu'uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Kerestes.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 Missing From World War II Accounted For
March 9, 2017

U.S. Army Air Forces Pvt. William D. Gruber, 22

U.S. Army Air Forces Pvt. William D. Gruber, from Montana unaccounted for from World War II, has now been identified.

On Dec. 8, 1941, Gruber was assigned to the Philippine Department, U.S. Army Forces in the Far East, when Japanese forces invaded the Philippine Islands. Gruber and his unit cared for those wounded in intense fighting until May 6, 1942, when the U.S. fortress of Corregidor fell, and the Philippines fell under control of Japanese forces. Thousands of U.S. and Filipino service members were taken prisoner; including many who were forced to endure the Bataan Death March, en route to Japanese prisoner of war (POW) camps, including the POW camp at Cabanatuan on the island of Luzon, Philippines. Gruber was among those reported captured after the surrender of Corregidor and who were eventually moved to the Cabanatuan POW camp. More than 2,500 POWs perished in this camp during the remaining years of the war.

In 2016, after the Gruber family had requested the disinterment of remains they believed to be Gruber, the Department of Defense determined that in order to apply its modern identification technologies to the Gruber case and enhance the possibility of identification, two graves associated with Gruber's loss would have to be exhumed.

DNA analysis, as well as circumstantial evidence, were used in his identification.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 9, 2017

Army Pfc. Manuel M. Quintana, 31

Army Pfc. Manuel M. Quintana, Orange County, California  missing from the Korean War, has now been identified.

In late July 1950, Quintana was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 29th Infantry Regiment, when his unit was ordered to move toward Hadong. The regiment unexpectedly encountered enemy forces, who quickly overpowered the American forces. Following the battle, Quintana could not be accounted for and was declared missing in action as of July 27, 1950.

Following the war, no returning American prisoners of war were able to provide any information concerning Quintana's status.

In December 1950, a set of unidentified remains was recovered from a grave near Chinuju-Hadong Highway. Those remains were buried in the Masan United Nations Military Cemetery as Unknown X-183. In 1951, the graves at Masan cemetery were exhumed and transferred to the U.S. Army's Central Identification Unit (CIU) in Kokura, Japan, for identification.

Several attempts were made to associate X-183 with unresolved casualties, however with limited technology the remains could be attributed to 41 possibilities. September 1955 it was determined the remains were "unidentifiable" and were transferred to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the "Punchbowl."

In December 2014, a family member requested the disinterment of Unknown X-183 based on documents identifying another soldier with tentative association. In May 2016, the grave was exhumed and sent to the DPAA laboratory for identification.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
March 9, 2017

Army Cpl. Gerald I. Shepler, 20,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Gerald I. Shepler, 20, of Liberty, Indiana, will be buried March 11 in Liberty. On Nov. 29, 1950, Shepler was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division, on a reconnaissance patrol. Shepler was the lead scout when the patrol encountered an enemy ambush near Hajoyang-ni, North Korea, during which an enemy mortar round reportedly exploded within 10 yards of Shepler. Following the battle, Shepler could not be accounted for and he was declared missing in action.

Shepler’s name did not appear on any list provided by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces or Korean People’s Army as a prisoner of war. Though no returning American prisoners of war provided any information concerning Shepler, testimony from witnesses stated they suspected he was mortally wounded by the mortar explosion. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Nov. 29, 1950.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned 208 boxes of commingled human remains to the United States, which we determined to contain the remains of at least 600 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicate that some of the remains were recovered from the vicinity where Shepler was believed to have died.

To identify Shepler remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA), Y-chromosome (Y-STR) and autosomal (auDNA) DNA analysis, which matched brother and three sisters, as well as anthropological analysis and dental analysis, which matched his records, and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
March 7, 2017

U.S. Air Force Reserve Capt. Daniel W. Thomas, 25

U.S. Air Force Reserve Capt. Daniel W. Thomas, Danbury, Ia missing from the Vietnam War, has now been accounted for.

On July 6, 1971, Thomas was the pilot of an OV-10A aircraft with one other crewmember flying over central Laos in support of an eight man Special Forces reconnaissance team. When the aircraft arrived in the area, the weather was bad, however it was determined that this would not affect the aircraft’s mission. Approximately thirty minutes after the last radio transmission from the OV-10A aircraft the ground team heard an impact or explosion to their northeast, but could not determine the distance to the explosion. Extensive search efforts failed to locate the crash site.

After multiple negative attempts to investigate the crash site, in April 2014 a Vietnamese witness provided a photograph of an ID tag associated with one of the two crewmembers. In August 2014, possible human remains were approved for repatriation and accessioned. DPAA analysis of aircraft wreckage and life support items indicated both aircrew members were in the aircraft at the time of impact. Additionally, through research, analysis, and DNA testing, the DPAA Laboratory identified the second crewmember, Maj. Donald Carr, in August 2015.

On April 12, 2016, the DPAA lab received dental remains, ID tag, and other material evidence from the Vietnamese Office for Seeking Missing Persons, which was consolidated into accession.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
February 24, 2017

   

Army Sgt. 1st Class Robert R. Cummings, 20,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Robert R. Cummings, 20, of Manistique, Michigan, will be buried March 4 in Clarksville, Tennessee. In late November, 1950, after several months of battle alongside the United Nations Command and Republic of Korea against the Korean People’s Army, an estimated 300,000 soldiers of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces attacked the unit during an allied movement north near the Yalu River. Facing constrictive terrain, poor weather conditions and being outnumbered, the advancing U.S. forces were facing unfavorable circumstances. The 187th regiment was moved to positions along the Chongchon and Kuryong rivers in order to preserve lines of communication. The regiment assembled a reconnaissance patrol to gather enemy information on Nov. 29, 1950, when it encountered an enemy ambush near Hajoyang, North Korea. Following this ambush, Cummings was declared missing in action.

**Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned 208 boxes of commingled human remains to the United States, which we believe to contain the remains of at least 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicate that some of the remains were recovered from the vicinity where Cummings was believed to have died.

In the identification of Cummings’ remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence, dental comparison, and forensic identification tools, including mitochondrial DNA analysis, Y-chromosome short tandem repeat DNA analysis and autosomal (nuclear) DNA testing, which matched a sister and a brother.



 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 24, 2017

   

Navy Steward’s Mate 1st Class Cyril I. Dusset, 21

Remains of Navy Steward’s Mate 1st Class Cyril I. Dusset, from New Orleans, Orleans Parish Louisiana, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, now have been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Dusset was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Dusset. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Dusset.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 24, 2017

 

Navy Seaman 1st Class Paul S. Raimond, 26

Remains of Navy Seaman 1st Class Paul S. Raimond, from Texas, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, now have been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Raimond was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Raimond. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Raimond.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 24, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Lawrence H. Fecho,

 

Remains of Navy Fireman 1st Class Lawrence H. Fecho, from North Dakota, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, now have been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Fecho was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Fecho. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Fecho

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 24, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Walter B. Rogers, 23

Remains of Navy Fireman 1st Class Walter B. Rogers, South Dakota, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Rogers was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Rogers. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Rogers.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 22, 2017

Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles W. Thompson

Remains of Navy Fireman 1st Class Charles W. Thompson, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Thompson was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Thompson. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Thompson.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 15, 2017

Navy Fire Control man 3rd Class Robert L. Pribble

Remains of Navy Fire Control man 3rd Class Robert L. Pribble, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Pribble was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Pribble. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Pribble.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 9, 2017

Navy Seaman 2nd Class George T. George

Remains of Navy Seaman 2nd Class George T. George, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, George was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including George. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including George.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 9, 2017

 

Navy Musician 1st Class Elliot D. Larsen, 25

Remains of Navy Musician 1st Class Elliot D. Larsen, 25, from Pioche Lincoln County Nevada, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, have now been identified.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Larsen was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Larsen. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Larsen.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 8, 2017

Navy Storekeeper 2nd Class Glenn G. Cyriack, 20

Navy Storekeeper 2nd Class Glenn G. Cyriack, killed in the attack on the USS Oklahoma during World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Cyriack was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Cyriack. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Cyriack.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
February 6, 2017

Fireman 3rd Class Robert N. Walkowiak, 21

 

Fireman 3rd Class Robert N. Walkowiak, from Oshkosh Winnebago County Wisconsin missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Walkowiak was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Walkowiak. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Walkowiak.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
February 1
, 2017

 

Army Master Sgt. Ira V. Miss, Jr., 23,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Master Sgt. Ira V. Miss, Jr., 23, of Frederick, Maryland, will be buried February 8 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C. On February 5, 1951, Miss was a member of Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, supporting South Korea against units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) in the area known as the Central Corridor in South Korea. The CPVF launched a counterattack with overwhelming numbers, forcing South Korean units to withdraw, and leaving U.S. Army units behind enemy lines. Miss was reported missing in action on Feb. 13, 1951, after Chinese Communist Forces overran the roadblock he was manning.

The Army Graves Registration Service attempted to account for the losses suffered during the battle, but searches yielded no results for Miss.

Repatriated American prisoners of war reported that Miss died while in captivity at POW Camp 1, Changsong, North Korea in May or June 1951. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared Miss deceased as of June 1, 1951.

In 1954, United Nations and communist forces exchanged the remains of war dead in what came to be called “Operation Glory.” All remains recovered in Operation Glory were turned over to the Army’s Central Identification Unit for analysis. The remains they were unable to identify were interred as unknowns at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the “Punchbowl.”

In 1999, due to advances in technology, the Department of Defense began to re-examine records and concluded that the possibility for identification of some of these unknowns now existed. The remains designated X-14124 were exhumed on May 18, 2015, so further analysis could be conducted.

To identify Miss’ remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used anthropological, dental and chest radiograph comparison analysis; mitochondrial DNA analysis, using the Next Generation Sequence technique, which matched a niece and a sister; as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 27
, 2017

Army Cpl. Melvin R. Hill, 19,

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

 Army Cpl. Melvin R. Hill, 19, of Pomona, California, will be buried February 4 in Alex, Oklahoma. In late November 1950, Hill was one of 2,500 U.S. and 700 Republic of Korea soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team on the east side of the Chosin River. On the night of Nov. 27, the Chinese People’s Volunteer Force surrounded the 31st RCT and attacked. Continued attacks over subsequent days forced Americans to withdraw. By Dec. 6, 1950, approximately 1,500 wounded soldiers were evacuated, and the remaining had been either captured or killed. Hill was reported missing in action as a result of the battles.

Hill’s name did not appear on any list as a prisoner of war and no repatriated Americans could provide any information concerning Hill. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared Hill deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which when combined with remains recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea, included the remains of approximately 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the area where Hill was believed to have died.

To identify Hill’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools, including mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched two nephews.



 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 11
, 2017

Army Sgt. James W. Sharp

Army Sgt. James W. Sharp, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.

In late November, 1950, Sharp was a member of Battery B, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 31st Regimental Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By December 6, the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Because Sharp could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Dec. 6, 1950.

Sharp’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no repatriated Americans were able to provide any information concerning Sharp as a prisoner of war. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Feb. 17, 1954.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Sharp’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

During the 25th Joint Recovery Operation in 2001, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern bank of the Chosin Reservoir, Changjin County, North Korea, based on information provided by two Korean witnesses. The site was approximately one kilometer from the 31st RCT’s defensive perimeter. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least seven individuals.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Army Airmen From World War II Accounted For
January 10, 2017



 Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Charles E. Carlson, 29

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Charles E. Carlson, of New York, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 23, 1944, Carlson was a P-47 pilot with the 62nd Fighter Squadron, 56th Fighter Group, Eighth Air Force, and was shot down south of Bonn, Germany, during an air battle between American and German pilots. His wingman believed that Carlson had bailed from the plane. German officials reported finding and burying Carlson’s remains at the crash site near Buschhoven, Germany.

An investigation after the war by the American Graves Registration Command in 1948 found material evidence and eyewitness testimony linking a crash site near Buschhoven to Carlson’s plane. However, efforts to find his remains at the site were unsuccessful.

In March 2008, an independent German researcher contacted the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (now DPAA) with information regarding a plane crash near Buschhoven. He informed analysts that a local German resident had found parts of an aircraft and other material evidence consistent with a P-47 aircraft.

Between May 2008 and September 2009, JPAC historians conducted more interviews of potential eyewitnesses and research on the site of the crash. Based on information gathered during this work, JPAC investigators recommended excavation of the Buschhoven site for possible remains.

In October 2015, an independent organization, History Flight, Inc., conducted a preliminary investigation of the crash site. Through a partnership agreement with DPAA, History Flight conducted recovery efforts between Feb. 2, 2016 and May 17, 2016, where they found material evidence, aircraft wreckage and possible human remains. The remains were accessioned to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017



Army Air Forces 1st Lt. William J. Gray

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. William J. Gray, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On April 16, 1945, Gray was a member of the 391st Fighter Squadron, 366th Fighter Group and was the pilot of a single seat P-47D aircraft on a dive-bombing mission in the vicinity of Lindau, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany. His flight leader reported that after Gray strafed a truck, the left wing of his aircraft dipped into the trees, causing it to crash.

In October 1948, American Graves Registration Command (AGRC) investigators located the crash site and were able to correlate the site to Gray’s aircraft based on the serial numbers of four machine guns recovered at the site, which matched four machine guns on Gray’s aircraft. However, Gray’s remains were not recovered.

During investigations conducted in the Lindau area during a 2012 field investigation, Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (now DPAA) historians received leads about Gray’s loss. Based on information gathered during eyewitness interviews and local research, investigators recommended excavation of the Lindau site for the possible remains of Gray.

In April 2016, a DPAA recovery team excavated the crash site and recovered possible human remains. The remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Cpl. Walter G. Critchley,

Marine Corps Cpl. Walter G. Critchley, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Critchley was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Critchley died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio Island, but Critchley’s remains were not recovered. On Feb. 10, 1949, a military review board declared Critchley’s remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Sidney A. Cook,

Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Sidney A. Cook, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Cook was assigned to Company E, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Cook died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Cook’s remains were not recovered. On Feb. 8, 1949, a military review board declared Cook’s remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Pfc. Larry R. Roberts

Marine Corps Pfc. Larry R. Roberts, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Roberts was assigned to Special Weapons Group, 2nd Defense Battalion, Fleet Marine Force, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Roberts died Nov. 25, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Roberts’ remains were not recovered. On Oct. 11, 1949, a military review board declared Roberts’ remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Pfc. James O. Whitehurst, 23

Marine Corps Pfc. James O. Whitehurst, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Whitehurst was assigned to Company E, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Whitehurst died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Whitehurst’s remains were not recovered.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing Marine From World War II Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve 2nd Lt. Ernest Matthews,

Marine Corps Reserve 2nd Lt. Ernest Matthews, missing from World War II, has now been identified.

In November 1943, Matthews was assigned to Headquarters Company, Headquarters Battalion, Division Special Troops, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Matthews died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. In 1946 and 1947, the 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio, but Matthews’ remains were not recovered. In 1949, a military review board declared Matthews’ remains non-recoverable.

In June 2015, a nongovernmental organization, History Flight, Inc., notified DPAA that they discovered a burial site on Betio Island and recovered the remains of what they believed were 35 U.S. Marines who fought during the battle in November 1943. The remains were turned over to DPAA in July 2015.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 6
, 2017

Army Cpl. Luis P. Torres, 20,

The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Cpl. Luis P. Torres, 20, of Eagle Pass Texas, will be buried January 13 in San Antonio. On Sept. 1, 1950, Torres was member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, when his battalion had its position overrun by enemy forces along the east bank of the Naktong River, South Korea. During this attack, Torres was reported missing in action near Changyong, South Korea.

Torres’ name did not appear on any prisoner of war list, but one returning American prisoner of war reported that he believed Torres was held captive by the enemy and was executed. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of March 3, 1954.

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service planned to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Torres’ remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

On Dec. 20, 1950, a set of unidentified remains, previously recovered from a shallow grave near Changnyong, were buried in the Miryang United Nations Military Cemetery as “Unknown X-331.” In February 1951, the remains were moved to the Tanggok United Nations Military Cemetery. Although Torres was considered a candidate for identification, the remains were not identified due to a lack of substantiating evidence. The remains were then moved to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu and buried as Unknown.

On May 16, 2016, the remains were disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Torres’ remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, as well as DNA analysis, including mitochondrial DNA analysis through the Next Generation Sequencing technique, which matched a brother, a sister and a nephew.

 

 

 

 

 

Soldier Missing From Vietnam War Accounted For
January 6, 2017

Marine Corps Reserve 1st Lt. William C. Ryan, 25

 

Marine Corps Reserve 1st Lt. William C. Ryan, missing from the Vietnam War, has now been accounted for.

On May 11, 1969, Ryan was the radar intercept officer of an F-4B aircraft, for the Marine Fighter Attack Force 115, Marine Aircraft Group 13, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force Pacific, on a combat mission over Savannakhet Province, Laos. While pulling out of a bombing pass, the aircraft was hit by enemy fire. The pilot lost control and called several times for his radar officer to eject, but received no response. The pilot ejected before the aircraft crashed, and other members of the flight only witnessed one parachute leave the aircraft. The location of the crash site precluded a search and recovery effort, but the pilot was rescued. Ryan was declared deceased as of May 11, 1969.

From January 1990 until May 2012, joint teams with the U.S., Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Vietnamese Office for Research and Investigative Teams interviewed numerous witnesses to the crash, gathering information regarding where Ryan may have died.

From May 2012 until January 2016, joint teams conducted six excavations of a crash site near Ban Alang Noi, recovering life support items, aircraft wreckage and possible human remains. On Feb. 17, 2016, the remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Civilian Missing From World War II Identified
 January 05, 2017

Mr. John D. Armstrong

Mr. John D. Armstrong, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In mid-1941, Armstrong, formerly in the U.S. Navy Reserve, was recruited among a small group of American pilots battling Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Armstrong was among a group of pilots to train with the Flying Tigers at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instated an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Armstrong was killed during a training flight on Sept. 8, 1941, when his plane collided with another AVG member’s aircraft in midair.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-35, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

In April 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-633 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Civilian Missing From World War II Identified
 January 05, 2017

Mr. Maxx C. Hammer, Jr.

Mr. Maxx C. Hammer, Jr., missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In mid-1941, Hammer was recruited among a small group of American pilots battling Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Hammer was among a group of pilots to train with the Flying Tigers at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instated an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Hammer was killed during a training flight on Sept. 22, 1941, when his plane crashed on its way back to the airfield after a heavy rainstorm.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-35, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

In April 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-634 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Civilian Missing From World War II Identified
 January 05, 2017

Mr. Peter Atkinson

Mr. Peter Atkinson, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In mid-1941, Atkinson, formerly in the U.S. Army Air Corps Reserve, was recruited among a small group of American pilots battling Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Atkinson and two other pilots were among a group of pilots to train with the Flying Tigers at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instated an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Atkinson was killed during a training flight on Oct. 25, 1941, when his plane was reported to have disintegrated in a dive.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-35, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

In April 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-635 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.
DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Civilian From World War II Accounted For
January 5, 2017

Mr. Maax C. Hammer, Jr.

Mr. Maax C. Hammer, Jr., missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

In mid-1941, Hammer was recruited among a small group of American pilots battling Japanese forces invading China. He was employed with the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO), which was officially termed the “American Volunteer Group,” (AVG) and popularly known as the “Flying Tigers.” The AVG consisted of three fighter squadrons, each with approximately 30 Curtiss P-40 single-seat aircraft. In September 1941, Hammer was among a group of pilots to train with the Flying Tigers at Kyedaw Airfield, a British Royal Air Force airfield outside of Toungoo, Burma. Though most of the recruits were experienced pilots, none had seen combat. To prepare them, the AVG instated an aggressive training program, encouraging their pilots to carry out mock battles. Hammer was killed during a training flight on Sept. 22, 1941, when his plane crashed on its way back to the airfield after a heavy rainstorm.

In late December 1947, an American Graves Registration Service team recovered the remains of three members of the AVG. The remains were declared unidentifiable and were temporarily interred in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Barrackpore, India in January, 1948. The remains were eventually moved to Hawaii in an attempt to identify them, designated as X-633, X-634 and X-35, but identification was unsuccessful. They were reinterred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

In April 2016, due to advancements in forensic capabilities, X-634 was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 4
, 2017

Army Maj. Jack D. Griffiths, 31

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Maj. Jack D. Griffiths, 31, of San Diego, will be buried January 11 in San Diego. On Nov. 30, 1950, Griffiths was a member of Headquarters, 38th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, when he was reported missing in action in the vicinity of Somin-dong, North Korea.

Repatriated American prisoners of war reported that Griffiths died and was buried at Camp 5, Pyoktong, North Korea. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared Griffiths deceased.

In 1954, United Nations and communist forces exchanged the remains of war dead in what came to be called “Operation Glory.” All remains recovered in Operation Glory were turned over to the Army’s Central Identification Unit for analysis. A set of remains designated as X-14411 were unable to be identified and were interred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii, known as the “Punchbowl.”

In November 2013, the grave where X-14411 was buried was exhumed and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.

To identify Griffith’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used Next Generation Sequencing DNA analysis, which matched two sisters and a brother, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records and circumstantial evidence.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 4
, 2017

Army Sgt. Edward Saunders, 28

Army Sgt. Edward Saunders, missing from the Korean war, has now been accounted for.

On the night of Feb. 11 and 12, 1951, Saunders was a member of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, and was attached to the Republic of Korea Army’s 16th Regiment to provide support during a planned offensive, when they were attacked by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Force (CPVF). Both units retreated east, joining U.S. units at Saemal, South Korea. The regiment continued to fight the CPVF along the withdrawal route to Hoensong. By the end of the battle, only six soldiers remained. It was during this battle that Saunders was reported missing in action.

Following the war, one returning American prisoner of war reported that he and Saunders had been captured on Feb. 12, 1951, and that Saunders died sometime in August 1951 in Koksan, North Korea. Based on this information, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Aug. 31, 1951.

Between 1990 and 1994, North Korea returned to the United States 208 boxes of commingled human remains, which when combined with remains recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea, account for the remains of at least 600 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war. North Korean documents included in the repatriation indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the area where Saunders was believed to have died.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

Missing  From Korean War Accounted For
January 4
, 2017

Army Sgt. 1st Class Eugene J. Colley,

Army Sgt. 1st Class Eugene J. Colley, missing from the Korean War, has now been accounted for.

In late November, 1950, Colley was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. Approximately 2,500 U.S. and 700 South Korean soldiers assembled into the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), which was deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir, North Korea, when it was engaged by overwhelming numbers of Chinese forces. By Dec. 2, the U.S. Army evacuated approximately 1,500 wounded service members; the remaining soldiers had been either captured or killed in enemy territory. Following the withdrawal, fighting continued. Because Colley could not be accounted for by his unit at the end of the battle, he was reported missing in action as of Dec. 2, 1950.

Colley’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists and no repatriated Americans were able to provide any information concerning Colley as a prisoner of war. Due to the prolonged lack of evidence, the U.S. Army declared him deceased as of Dec. 31, 1953

Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Colley’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.

During the 36th Joint Recovery Operation in 2004, recovery teams conducted operations on the eastern bank of the Chosin Reservoir, Changjin County, North Korea, based on information provided a Korean witness. The site was in the vicinity of Twikkae Village. During the excavation, the recovery team recovered possible human remains of at least five individuals.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

USS Oklahoma Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
January 4, 2017

Navy Mess Attendant 1st Class Ralph M. Boudreaux, 35

Navy Mess Attendant 1st Class Ralph M. Boudreaux, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Boudreaux was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Boudreaux. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Boudreaux.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Soldier From World War II Accounted For
January 3, 2017

Navy Coxswain Verne F. Knipp,

Navy Coxswain Verne F. Knipp, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Dec. 7, 1941, Knipp was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Knipp. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Knipp.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.
DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains

 

 

 

 

 

Missing Soldier From World War II Accounted For
January 3, 2017

Army Pvt. Gene J. Appleby,

Army Pvt. Gene J. Appleby, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Sept. 17, 1944, Appleby was a member of Company A, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, as part of Operation Market Garden. The regiment was tasked with landing at Drop Zone “T,” north of Groesbeek, The Netherlands. Appleby successfully jumped and was seen on the ground by members of the unit. However, as the soldiers rallied to move toward their objective, Appleby was seen struck by enemy fire. Following the attack, he was listed as missing in action, and declared him deceased as of Sept. 18, 1945.

On Sept. 8, 2011, the Royal Netherlands Army Recovery and Identification Unit (RIU) was notified by the Groesbeek Police of possible human remains found at the Groenendaal Farm by local residents. Officials conducted an excavation and recovered possible human remains and material evidence. The remains were transferred to the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, now DPAA, for identification.

Historians from DPAA working on cases of missing Americans from Operation Market Garden received valuable recovery information from the RIU and traveled to the original recovery site with the local researchers who originally found the remains. With this information, the DPAA historians established a list of individuals whose circumstances of loss and last known location matched the remains. Appleby was among the top candidates.

DNA analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

POW/MIA's from  2016

 

Navy Sailor Missing From World War II Accounted For
December 30, 2016



Navy Water Tender 1st Class Walter H. Sollie, 37

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman from World War II have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors

Navy Water Tender 1st Class Walter H. Sollie, 37, of Myrtlewood, Alabama, will be buried Jan. 6, 2017, in Pensacola, Florida. On Dec. 7, 1941, Sollie was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Sollie. No single vessel at Pearl Harbor, with the exception of the USS Arizona, suffered as many fatalities.

From December 1941 to June 1944, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew, which were subsequently interred in the Halawa and Nu’uanu Cemeteries.

In September 1947, tasked with recovering and identifying fallen U.S. personnel in the Pacific Theater, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) disinterred the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks. The laboratory staff was only able to confirm the identifications of 35 men from the USS Oklahoma at that time. The AGRS subsequently buried the unidentified remains in 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (NMCP), known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. In October 1949, a military board classified those who could not be identified as non-recoverable, including Sollie.

In April 2015, the Deputy Secretary of Defense issued a policy memorandum directing the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma. On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains from the NMCP for analysis.

To identify Sollie’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched two great nieces, as well as circumstantial evidence and laboratory analysis, to include dental comparisons, which matched Sollie’s records.



 

Of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, more than 400,000 died during the war. Currently there are 73,104 service members still unaccounted for from World War II.

 

 

 

 

 

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