Posts Tagged ‘POW MIA’

POW MIA

Posted: June 29, 2012 in Uncategorized
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"Keeping the Promise", "Fulfill their Trust" and "No one left behind" are several of many mottos that refer to the efforts of the Department of Defense to recover those who became missing while serving our nation. More than 83,000 Americans are missing from World War II (73,000+), the Korean War (7,900+), the Cold War (126), the Vietnam War (1,666), 1991 Gulf War (0), and OEF/OIF (6). Hundreds of Defense Department men and women — both military and civilian — work in organizations around the world as part of DoD's personnel recovery and personnel accounting communities. They are all dedicated to the single mission of finding and bringing our missing personnel home. For a listing of all personnel accounted for since 2007 refer to http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/accounted_for. For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1420. The remains of the following MIA/POW’s have been recovered, identified, and scheduled for burial since the publication of the last RAO Bulletin:
Vietnam
 DPMO announced 30 MAY that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, were identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Arden K. Hassenger, 32, of Lebanon, Ore., burial was scheduled for 8 JUN in his hometown. On Dec. 24, 1965, Hassenger, and the crew of the AC-47D aircraft nicknamed “Spooky” failed to return from a combat strike mission in southern Laos. After a “mayday” signal was sent, all contact was lost with the crew. Two days of search efforts for the aircraft and crew were unsuccessful. In 1995, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic (L.P.D.R.) team investigated a crash in Savannakhet Province, Laos. Local villagers recalled seeing a two-propeller aircraft, similar to an AC-47D, crash in December 1965. One man had found aircraft wreckage in a nearby field while farming, and led the team to that location. The team recovered small pieces of aircraft wreckage at that time and recommended further investigative visits. Joint U.S./L.P.D.R. investigation and recovery teams re-visited the site four times from 1999 to 2001. They conducted additional interviews with locals, recovered military equipment, and began an excavation. No human remains were recovered, so the excavation was suspended pending additional investigation. In 2010, joint U.S./L.P.D.R. recovery teams again excavated the crash site. The team recovered human remains, personal items, and military equipment. Three additional excavations in 2011 recovered additional human remains and evidence. Scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command used dental records and material evidence to identify Hassenger. With the accounting of this airman, 1,666 service members still remain missing from the Vietnam War.
 DPMO announced 5 JUN that the remains of two U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, were identified and will be returned to their families for burial with full military honors. Air Force Lt. Col. Edward D. Silver, 34, of Junction City, Ore., will be buried on June 6, in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington D.C. On June 7, there will be a group burial service at Arlington National Cemetery honoring Silver and the other crew member, Maj. Bruce E. Lawrence, 25, of Easton Pa. Lawrence was buried on Sept. 21, 2011, in his hometown. On July 5, 1968, Silver and Lawrence, were flying the lead F-4C Phantom II aircraft of a two-ship formation, on a night armed-reconnaissance of enemy targets, in Quang Binh Province, North Vietnam. Other pilots flying in the area reported that they witnessed anti-aircraft fire striking the aircraft shortly before it crashed. No parachutes or signs of survivors were seen. In 1993, a joint U.S./Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) team traveled to Quang Binh Province to investigate a possible site related to the crash. Harsh terrain and safety concerns limited access to the location of the aircraft. From 1998 to 2000, joint U.S./S.R.V. teams interviewed witnesses, excavated several aircraft crash sites in the area, and recovered human remains. Additional recovery of military equipment, related to Silver and Lawrence’s crash, confirmed that two individuals were in the aircraft at the time of the incident. Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA – which matched that of both Lawrence and Silver’s living relatives –as well as nuclear DNA to identify the two men.
 DPMO announced 7 JUN that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, were identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Navy Lt. William E. Swanson, 27, of Zimmerman, Minn., will be buried June 11, at Fort Snelling in Minneapolis. On April 11, 1965, Swanson was the pilot of an A-1H Skyraider aircraft that crashed while on an armed reconnaissance mission over Khammouan Province, Laos. Other Americans in the area reported seeing his aircraft being struck by enemy fire and no parachute was deployed prior to the crash. Recovery efforts were not possible due to enemy presence in the days following the crash. In October 2000, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic (L.P.D.R.) team was investigating a different crash in Khammouan Province. Local villagers reported an aircraft crash site nearby, in the mountains north of the town of Boualapha. The team surveyed the site and found small pieces of aircraft wreckage, and unexploded bombs and rockets of the same type that Swanson’s A-1H had been carrying. In 2009, a joint U.S./L.P.D.R. recovery team excavated the site and found material evidence and military equipment. In 2010, another U.S./L.P.D.R. team completed the excavation and recovered human remains and additional evidence. Two data plates, with numbers matching Swanson’s aircraft, were found at the site. Scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command used circumstantial and material evidence to identify Swanson’s remains.
 DPMO announced 7 JUN that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, were identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Air Force Capt. Virgil K. Meroney III, 25, of Fayetteville, Ark., will be buried June 9, in his hometown. On March 1, 1969, Meroney was a crew member aboard an F-4D Phantom II aircraft that crashed while carrying out a nighttime strike mission in Kahammouan Province, Laos. Nearby U.S. aircrews reported seeing Meroney’s aircraft hit by enemy fire. No parachutes were seen after the aircraft was hit. Heavy enemy presence in the area prevented recovery efforts. In 1994, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic (L.P.D.R.) team investigated the crash site in Khammouan Province, Laos. The team located aircraft wreckage of an F-4 and military equipment, which correlated with Meroney’s aircraft. From 2000 to 2011, additional joint U.S/L.P.D.R recovery teams investigated and excavated the crash site multiple times. Teams recovered human remains, and military equipment, including an engine data plate, a radio call-sign plate, and a military identification card bearing Meroney’s name. Scientists from the JPAC used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools including dental comparisons, and radiograph comparisons in the identification of Meroney.
Korea
 DPMO announced 5 JUN that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the KoreanWar, were identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Army Cpl. Dick E. Osborne, 17, of Brookville, Pa., will be buried June 6, in Sigel, Pa. On Nov. 2, 1950, Osborne and members of the 8th Cavalry, 3rd Battalion, L Company, were fighting Chinese forces near the Kuryong River, North Korea, in an area known as “Camel’s Head.” Following the fighting, Osborne was listed as missing in action. His body was not recovered at the time, and he was likely buried on the battlefield by Chinese or North Korean forces. On April 12, 2007, North Korea gave the United States six sets of human remains believed to be U.S. servicemen. North Korean documents, turned over with some of the boxes, indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the area where Osborne had reportedly died in battle. Evidence such as military items and uniform fragments were included with the remains. To identify the remains, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence, and forensic identification tools such as dental records, and mitochondrial DNA – which matched Osborne’s living nephew.
World War II
 DPMO announced 5 JUN that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from World War II, have been identified and were scheduled to be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Marine Corps Pfc. John A. Donovan, 20, of Plymouth, Mich., will be buried June 8, in Ann Arbor, Mich. Donovan was a crewmember aboard a PBJ-1 aircraft that failed to return from a night training mission over the island of Espiritu Santo, in what is known today as Vanuatu. None of the crew was recovered and in 1945 they were officially presumed deceased. In 1994, a group of private citizens notified the U.S. that aircraft wreckage had been found on the island of Espiritu Santo. Human remains were recovered from the site at that time and turned over to the Department of Defense. In 1999, a survey team traveled to the site, which was located at an elevation of 2,600 ft. in extremely rugged terrain, and determined that recovery teams would need specialized mountain training to safely complete a recovery mission. In 2000, a Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) team visited the site and recovered human remains. From 2009 to 2011, multiple JPAC recovery teams excavated the site and recovered additional remains, aircraft parts and military equipment. Scientists and analysts from JPAC used circumstantial evidence and dental records in the identification of Donovan’s remains.
[Source: http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/ Jun 2012 +]

POW MIA

Posted: May 14, 2012 in Uncategorized
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"Keeping the Promise", "Fulfill their Trust" and "No one left behind" are several of many mottos that refer to the efforts of the Department of Defense to recover those who became missing while serving our nation. More than 83,000 Americans are missing from World War II, the Korean War, the Cold War, the Vietnam War and the 1991 Gulf War. Hundreds of Defense Department men and women — both military and civilian — work in organizations around the world as part of DoD's personnel recovery and personnel accounting communities. They are all dedicated to the single mission of finding and bringing our missing personnel home. For a listing of all personnel accounted for since 2007 refer to http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/accounted_for. For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1420. The remains of the following MIA/POW’s have been recovered, identified, and scheduled for burial since the publication of the last RAO Bulletin:
Korea
Today, more than 7,900 Americans remain unaccounted-for from the Korean War.
 DPMO announced 20 APR that the remains of Army Cpl. James N. Larkin, 34, of Kirkwood, Mo., a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. He will be buried 24 APR in St. Louis, Mo. On Feb. 11, 1951, Larkin and his unit known as “Support Force 21,” from the 2nd Infantry Division, were attacked by Chinese forces near Changbong-ni, South Korea. The unit withdrew to a more defensible position and suffered many losses. Following the battle, Larkin was listed as missing in action. After the 1953 armistice, surviving prisoners of war who returned during “Operation Big Switch” said Larkin had died in April 1951, from battle wounds and malnutrition while captive in the Chinese operated POW camp known as “Bean Camp” located in North Korea. His remains were not returned during Operation Glory in 1954. Between 1991 and 1994, North Korea gave the United States 208 boxes of remains believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. servicemen. North Korean documents, turned over with some of the boxes, indicated that some of the human remains were recovered from Suan County, where Larkin was held as a POW. Scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence, as well as dental comparisons, radiographs, and mitochondrial DNA – which matched that of Larkin’s nephews—in the identification of the remains.
 DPMO announced 20 APR that the remains of Army Pfc. Richard E. Clapp, 19, of Seattle, Wash., a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. He will be buried April 25, at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. On Sept. 2, 1950, Clapp and the C Company, 1st Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment came under fire near Yulchon, South Korea, and Clapp was killed in action. The Army was unable to identify his remains at the time, and the remains were buried as “Unknown” in a military cemetery on the Korean Peninsula. In 1951, the U.S. consolidated cemeteries on the peninsula. The unknown remains were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. In 2011, due to advances in identification technology, the remains were exhumed for identification. Scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools such as radiograph comparison, and dental records to identify Clapp.
 DPMO announced 23 APR that the remains of Army Sgt. 1st Class Edris A. Viers, 32, of Swan, Iowa, a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Burial is scheduled for 27 APR in his hometown. In August 1950, Viers and Battery A, 555th Field Artillery Battalion, were fighting against North Korean forces in a battle known as the “Bloody Gulch,” near Pongam-ni, South Korea. After the battle, on Aug. 12, Viers was listed as missing in action. In late 1950, U.S. Army Graves Registration Service personnel recovered remains of service members from that battlefield, including nine men who were unidentified. These men were buried at the 25th Infantry Division Cemetery in South Korea. In 1951, the U.S. consolidated cemeteries on the peninsula. The unknown remains were re-interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. In 2011, due to advances in identification technology, the remains were exhumed for identification. Based on available evidence such as metal identification tags, military clothing, and wartime records, analysts from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) were able to conclude that the remains were a sergeant from the 90th or 555th Field Artillery Battalion, who had died at Pongam-ni. Both groups had suffered losses in the Bloody Gulch battle. Scientists from the JPAC used the circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools such as radiograph comparisons to identify the remains as Viers.
 DPMO announced 24 APR that the remains of a Army Pfc. Nelson E. Young, 19, of Suffolk, Mass.,U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors. Burial is scheduled for 28 APR in his hometown.in Foxboro, Mass. In late November 1950, Young, and elements of the 31st Regimental Combat Team, known as “Task Force Faith,” were advancing along the eastern banks of the Chosin Reservoir, in North Korea, when they came under attack. On Dec. 2, 1950, Young, along with many other Americans, was listed as missing in action as a result of the heavy fighting. In 1953, returning Americans who had been held as prisoners of war reported that Young had been captured by the Chinese during the battle from Nov. 27- Dec. 1, 1950. He died several months later as a result of malnutrition while being held as a prisoner of war, near the northern end of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea; an area known as “Death Valley.” Between 1991 and 1994, North Korea gave the United States 208 boxes of remains believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. servicemen. North Korean documents, turned over with some of the boxes, indicated that some of the human remains were recovered from the area where Young had reportedly died in captivity, in North Korea. To identify the remains, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence, and forensic identification tools such as dental records, and mitochondrial DNA – which matched Young’s living maternal relatives.
Vietnam
 Army Capt. Charles R. Barnes, 27, of Philadelphia, Pa., will be buried 2 MAY, in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. On March 16, 1969, Barnes and four other service members departed Qui Nhon Airfields bound for Da Nang and Phu Bai, in a U-21A Ute aircraft. As they approached Da Nang, they encountered low clouds and poor visibility. Communications with the aircraft were lost, and they did not land as scheduled. Immediate search efforts were limited due to hazardous weather conditions, and all five men were list as missing in action. From 1986-1989, unidentified human remains were turned over to the U.S. from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) in several different instances. None of the remains were identified given the limits of the technology of the time. In 1993, a joint U.S./S.R.V. team, led by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command(JPAC), conducted investigations in Quang Nam-Da Nang, and Thua Thien-Hue Provinces. interviewed a local Vietnamese citizen who supplied remains and an identification tag bearing Barnes’ name, which he claimed to have recovered from an aircraft crash site. In 1999, another joint U.S./S.R.V. team interviewed additional Vietnamese citizens about the crash and they were led to the crash site. In 2000, a joint U.S./S.R.V. team excavated the site and recovered human remains and material evidence. Scientists from the JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory Among used circumstantial evidence, and forensic identification tools such as mitochondrial DNA – which matched that of Barnes’ sister – in the identification of the remains.
[Source: http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/ Apr 2012 +]

POW MIA

Posted: March 23, 2012 in Uncategorized
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