Veterans

June 25, 2012

Airman missing in action from World War II identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced June 25 that the remains of a serviceman, missing in action from World War II, have been identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Emil T. Wasilewski of Chicago will be buried June 26 at Arlington National Cemetery. On Sept. 13, 1944, Wasilewski and eight other crewmembers were on a B-17G Flying Fortress that crashed near Neustaedt-on-the-Werra, Germany. Only one of the crewmen is known to have successfully parachuted out of the aircraft before it crashed. The remaining eight crewmen were buried by German forces in a cemetery in Neustaedt.

Following the war, U.S. Army Graves Registration personnel attempted to recover the remains of the eight men, but were only able to move the remains of one man to a U.S. military cemetery in Holland. In 1953, with access to eastern Germany restricted by the Soviet Union, the remains of the seven remaining unaccounted-for crewmen – including Wasilewski – were declared non-recoverable.

In 1991, a German national who was digging a grave in the cemetery in Neustaedt discovered a metal U.S. military identification tag and notified officials. German burial law restricted further site investigation until 2007, when the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command surveyed the area. In 2008, the site was excavated and the team recovered human remains and military equipment.

Scientists from the JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, including dental comparisons and Y-chromosome DNA – which matched that of Wasilewski’s nephew – in the identification of his remains.

At the end of the war, the U.S. government was unable to recover and identify approximately 79,000 Americans. Today, more than 73,000 are unaccounted for from the conflict.

For more information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1420.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Courtesy photograph

Two Vietnam War Soldiers, one from Civil War to receive Medal of Honor

U.S. Army graphic Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. Adkins and former Spc. 4 Donald P. Sloat will receive the Medal of Honor for actions in Vietnam. The White House announced Aug. 26 that Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. A...
 
 

Reunions

Sept. 7-9 603rd AC&W Radar Sqdn (Germany, 1960-1966) Kansas City, Mo. For more information, contact Roger Kirby at 417) 358-3654 or email rakmak@sbcglobal.net. Sept. 9-14 58th Ftr Assn (58th & 474th, WWII-2014) Norfolk, Va. For more information, contact Jean Kupferer at (812) 945-7649 or email jkupferer@twc.com. Sept. 10-15 Army Air Corps Pilot Classes of WWII...
 
 

VA outlines actions taken to improve access to care, implement IG recommendations from

The Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General Aug. 26 released the final report of its review of systemic issues with patient scheduling and access issues at the Phoenix VA Health Care System. VA concurred with the recommendations in the final report and, in many cases, has already implemented action plans and made improvements...
 

 

HUD, VA, USICH announce 33 percent drop in veteran homelessness since 2010

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness Aug. 26released a new national estimate of veteran homelessness in the United States. Data collected during the annual Point-in-Time Count conducted in January 2014 shows there were 49,933 homeless veterans in America, a decline of 33...
 
 

VA announces new grants to help end veterans homelessness

Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald announced Aug. 11 the award of approximately $300 million in grants that will help approximately 115,000 homeless and at-risk veterans and their families. The grants will be distributed to 301 community agencies in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Under the...
 
 

VA funds SoCal agencies in battle to end homelessness

Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald announced Aug. 11 the award of $23.1 million in homeless prevention grants to counties in Southern California. The grants will serve approximately 4,400 homeless and at-risk Veteran families as part of the Supportive Services for Veteran Families program. This award will serve Veteran families associated with 17 different...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>