Carrying out search and repatriation of 1,500-2,000 sets of remains of Vietnamese soldiers who laid down their lives in Laos and Cambodia during wartime is a key task of the national steering committee on search, repatriation and identification of remains of fallen soldiers.
Category Archives: Missing in Action
TEL AVIV — For decades, Israel’s National Center of Forensic Medicine has tested skeletal remains secreted across its northern border, checking whether the DNA matched that of Israeli soldiers missing in action behind enemy lines in Lebanon or Syria.
“From time to time they’d bring the samples,” said Chen Kugel, the head of the forensics center. “It’s body remains. It’s bones. It was always: maybe this time, maybe this time, maybe this time.”
There was never a match.
Then, earlier this year, a bag of bones arrived, and from the moment it was opened, it looked promising. The staff soon determined that the bones belonged to Staff Sgt. Zachary Baumel, who had gone missing in Lebanon 37 years ago.
A Trenton man was killed during the attack on Pearl Harbor. After nearly 78 years, his remains are finally coming home.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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: