Category Archives: Missing Persons

No news is always bad news for families of the missing at Medical Examiner’s annual “Missing Persons Day”

The ME’s office has identified the bodies of nine missing people since launching the program four years ago — along with a single match between a living person and their relatives, according to Gajewksi.

Belgium children face DNA tests amid DR Congo kidnap fears

Belgian authorities have asked for DNA samples of children adopted from the Democratic Republic of Congo to establish if their biological parents are still alive, reports say.
They have contacted the adoptive parents of some 15 children to find out if the youngsters were kidnapped, according to Belgian newspapers.

The Mediterranean’s deadliest shipwreck just got deadlier

ROME — Before their lives ended in an underwater deathtrap, before they lined up 100 to a row on a Libyan beach to board a boat with no anchor, the young men from the parched villages of the Sahel had names.
Two forensic investigators, one crisscrossing Africa and another in a university laboratory in Italy, are on a quest against the odds to keep Italy’s promise to find those names. They are tracing the identities of the migrants killed when an overloaded fishing boat went down off the coast of Libya on April 18, 2015, in the Mediterranean’s deadliest shipwreck in living memory.

DNA testing crucial to identifying remains in unmarked graves in Sugar Land

The questions now are: Will these prisoners ever be identified, and are these century-old remains linked to the present day? Experts say the answer may lie in specialized DNA testing.

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:

North Korea Provided Just 1 Dog Tag With 55 Sets Of War Remains

WASHINGTON (AP) — When North Korea handed over 55 boxes of bones that it said are remains of American war dead, it provided a single military dog tag but no other information that could help U.S. forensics experts determine their individual identities, a U.S. defense official said Tuesday.
The official, who discussed previously undisclosed aspects of the remains issue on condition of anonymity, said it probably will take months if not years to fully determine individual identities from the remains, which have not yet been confirmed by U.S. specialists to be those of American servicemen.

VFW urges families of MIA servicemembers to provide DNA samples

WASHINGTON (KCTV) -The national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is asking the families of those who went missing during the Korean and Cold Wars to submit DNA in the hopes of identifying the remains North Korea turned over to the U.S. recently.

DNA to X-ray: Military has variety of tools to ID returned remains

NEW YORK — The U.S. military remains released by North Korea on Friday will be sent to a military lab in Hawaii, where they’ll enter a system that routinely identifies service members from decades-old conflicts.
Identifications depend on combining multiple lines of evidence, and they can take time: Even after decades, some cases remain unresolved.

Thousands of women seek their roots decades after being sold in boy-preferring rural China

An increasing number of these girls, mostly adopted in the late 1970s and early 1980s, are starting to explore their identity now. In a recent “family-seeking” activity held in Gutian county, Fujian Province early in July, many women gathered and registered their information and left blood samples for DNA tracking.

U.S. May Soon Resume Search for Korean War Dead in North Korea

North Korea may allow the United States to resume a search for thousands of American war dead from the 1950-53 Korean War, but it will be months before excavations can begin and years until bone fragments are identified, a senior US official said.

How one man’s obsession led to the discovery of a lost WWII pilot

In late June 1994, a helicopter banked over the Charley River in Alaska’s eastern Yukon wilderness. Below, on a hillside of granite and greenstone, was the wreckage of a B-24D bomber that went down Dec. 21, 1943 during a flight to test the plane’s systems in extreme cold.
Doug Beckstead, a National Park Service historian, pressed his face against the glass for his first view of the “Iceberg Inez,” one of the many hulks of lost aircraft across Alaska.
This one came with a remarkable backstory. The lone survivor — co-pilot 1st Lt. Leon Crane, a city kid from Philadelphia — made his way out of the frozen Yukon wilds after an 81-day ordeal.

BYU family history students helping the Army identify remains of missing soldiers with DNA testing

One mother continued setting a place at the dinner table every night for her son — just in case.
Not every family of the 82,000 American soldiers who have gone missing in wars since World War II will get answers, but a group at Brigham Young University is hoping to help some of them learn what happened to their loved ones.

68 years after the Korean War, hundreds of US families are still searching for closure

The Korean War broke out 68 years ago this month, when North Korean tanks and troops crossed the 38th parallel on June 25, 1950, as part of an “all out offensive” against South Korea.
The remains of thousands of US soldiers are still in North Korea, despite decades of effort by families and the US military to repatriate them.

Korean War GI from Gary, who had been missing since 1950, to be buried on Saturday

The remains of U.S. Army Pfc. David Baker, who had been missing in action since November 1950, will finally be buried Saturday at Evergreen Memorial Park in Hobart.
Mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched him with his family, was used, as well as anthropological analysis and circumstantial evidence, the Defense Department said.

For relatives of Guatemala volcano victims, an agonizing wait

ESCUINTLA, Guatemala: At an improvised morgue in the Guatemalan town of Escuintla, dozens of people stand around in an anguished daze, clutching photos of their loved ones, hoping to recover their bodies for burial.