Veterans

October 3, 2012

Marines missing in action from World War II identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced Oct. 2 that the remains of seven servicemen, missing in action from World War II, have been identified and are being buried with full military honors.

Marine Corps 1st Lt. Laverne A. Lallathin of Raymond, Wash.; 2nd Lt. Dwight D. Ekstam of Moline, Ill.; 2nd Lt. Walter B. Vincent, Jr. of Tulsa, Okla.; TSgt. James A. Sisney of Redwood City, Calif.; Cpl. Wayne R. Erickson of Minneapolis; Cpl. John D. Yeager of Pittsburgh, Penn.; and Pfc. John A. Donovan of Plymouth, Mich., will be buried as a group, in a single casket representing the crew, on Oct. 4, in Arlington National Cemetery. Six of the Marines were identified and buried as individuals previously this year. Lallathin, also individually identified, will be interred individually at Arlington on the same day as the group interment.

On April 22, 1944, the Marines were 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 seven crew members were recovered at that time, 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 Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) survey team traveled to the location. The crash site was located at an elevation of 2,600 ft., in extremely rugged terrain, and the team determined that specialized mountain training would be necessary to safely complete a recovery mission. From 2000 to 2011, multiple JPAC recovery teams excavated the site and recovered human remains, aircraft parts and military equipment.

To identify the remains, scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory evaluated circumstantial evidence and mitochondrial DNA – which matched that of the Marines’ family members.

Today, more than 73,000 Americans remain unaccounted-for from the conflict.

 




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


 
 

 
Air Force photograph

AF holds 50th anniversary Vietnam War commemoration ceremony

Air Force photograph F-105 crews played a key role in Operation Rolling Thunder. During this three-year Vietnam War campaign, Air Force, Marine and Navy aircraft bombed targets throughout North Vietnam. U.S. and Australian wars...
 
 

Airmen missing from WWII accounted for

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced Feb. 23, that the remains of U.S. servicemen, missing in action from World War II, have been accounted for and are being returned to their families for burial with full military honors. Army Air Forces 1st Lts. William D. Bernier of Augusta, Mont.; Bryant E. Poulsen of Salt Lake...
 
 

President signs Clay Hunt Act, says ‘Stigma has to end’

President Barack Obama Feb. 12 signed into law the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act, or SAV Act. The act is aimed at reducing military and veteran suicides and improving their access to quality mental health care. Hunt was a decorated Marine veteran who struggled with post-traumatic stress. He deployed to Iraq and...
 

 

Survivor of USS Arizona from Pearl Harbor attack dies at 100

YUBA CITY, Calif. – The oldest living crew member of the battleship USS Arizona to have survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor has died in Northern California at the age of 100. Retired Navy Lt. Cmdr. Joseph Langdell died Feb. 4 at a nursing home in Yuba City, according to his son, Ted Langdell....
 
 
Photograph by Diane Betzler

Edwards Airmen celebrate Super Bowl with local retired veterans

Photograph by Diane Betzler Life is good: Retired veterans and residents of the William J. “Pete” Knight Veterans’ Home enjoy watching the Super Bowl, eating a delicious steak dinner and swapping war stories with members ...
 
 

Reunions – February thru April, 2015

374th Field Maint Sqdn., PACAF Feb. 13-14; Biloxi, Miss. For more information, contact Larry Voss at (218) 410-2192 or email levs.22@hotmail.com. 11th Abn/Air Assault Div Mid-Atlantic Chapter, and 187th RCT Feb. 21-25; Myrtle Beach, S.C. For more information, contact Artie Heape at (843) 846-4693 or email artieheape@centurylink.net. Seabees in Ireland & Scotland, NMCB 62 Feb....
 




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>