Department of Defense officials with the POW/Missing Personnel Office, or DPMO, announced Sept. 19 that the remains of Air Force pilots Maj. James E. Sizemore of Lawrenceville, Ill., and Maj. Howard V. Andre Jr., of Memphis, Tenn., have been identified and will be returned to their families for burial with full military honors Sept. 23 at Arlington National Cemetery.
On July 8, 1969, Sizemore and Andre were on a night armed reconnaissance mission when their A-26A Invader crashed in Xiangkhoang province, Laos. Both men died in the crash but their remains were unaccounted for until April 2013.
In 1993, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic team investigated an aircraft crash site in Laos. They recovered aircraft wreckage from an A-26. The team was not able to conduct a complete excavation of the site at that time.
Twice in 2010, joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic teams conducted excavations of the crash site recovering human remains, aircraft wreckage, personal effects and military equipment associated with Sizemore and Andre.
In the identification of the remains, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, or JPAC, used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools, such as dental comparison – which matched Sizemore’s records.
There are more than 1,640 American service members that are still unaccounted-for from the Vietnam War.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, call (703) 699-1169 or visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo.