Category Archives: Missing in Action

Corn in the bones: The science behind North Korea war remains

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii — When war remains arrive at the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency to be reunited with waiting families, there’s always a question: How do they know for sure who it is?
DPAA laboratory director John Byrd and forensic anthropologist Jennie Jin, who leads the Korea War team, walked reporters through the science behind how they will identify 55 boxes of remains returned by North Korea this summer.

Through fragments of long-lost lives, lab aims to give military families a measure of peace

HONOLULU — A Christmas card arrives every December in Bill Belcher’s mailbox, sent by the daughter of a 1940s fighter pilot he unearthed in the mountains of Papua New Guinea.
The excavation was 20 years ago. But like the resolve of other military families awaiting the discovery of some trace of a loved one, the woman’s gratitude for her father’s repatriated remains hasn’t diminished with time.

Dover Air Force Base to Play Role in Identifying Korean War Remains

Dr. Tim McMahon, the director of DNA operations for the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System, said the process may be time-consuming but ultimately helps bring closure to families of Korean War soldiers who didn’t return home.
“What people need to realize is that we never give up,” he said, noting the agency has a 92 percent success rate in cases using mitochondrial DNA to make identifications.

Korea Remains Could Be Army Troops Who Fell at ‘Frozen Chosin’

The remains returned by North Korea are possibly those of Army troops who fell in the brutal 1950 battle at the Chosin Reservoir, Pentagon POW/MIA officials said Thursday.
The returned remains are associated with the fight at what was called the “Frozen Chosin” for the sub-zero temperatures in which Marine and Army units fought their way out of encirclement by Chinese forces and were evacuated by sea, said Dr. John Byrd, a forensic anthropologist.

How the US military will identify remains from North Korea

HONOLULU — U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is flying to Hawaii on Wednesday to receive 55 boxes of bones recently handed over by North Korea. The remains are believed to belong to servicemen from the U.S. and other United Nations member countries who fought alongside the U.S. during the Korean War.
Here’s a look at what will happen next: