The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, accounted-for from the Korean War, are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Army Cpl. Thomas W. Reagan, 18, of Lebanon, Indiana, and accounted for on March 30, will be buried July 6 in Pensacola, Florida. In August 1950, Reagan was assigned to Company A, 14th Engineer Combat Battalion, 24th Infantry Division, participating in the defense of the 24th ID’s main supply route and the town of Yongsan in an area known as the Naktong Bulge, in South Korea. Reagan’s company, an engineer unit, was overwhelmed and outmaneuvered by the Korean People’s Army, and utilized as an infantry unit in an attempt to hold open the supply route. On Aug. 12, 1950, the company was able to withdraw to a safe area to account for their Soldiers. Reagan could not be accounted for and was declared missing in action.
An Unknown, labeled X-165 Tanggok, buried in the division’s cemetery at Miryang, South Korea, was recovered on Sept. 12, 1950. Attempts to associate the remains with unresolved U.S. casualties were unsuccessful and they were declared unidentifiable. The remains were buried in the National Memorial of the Pacific, known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu, as a Korean War Unknown.
After thorough scientific and historical analysis, it was deemed that X-165 could likely be identified. On May 19, 2014, a request to exhume X-165 was made and approved. The remains were disinterred and sent to the laboratory for identification.
To identify Reagan’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, and circumstantial evidence.
DPAA is grateful to the Department of Veterans Affairs for their partnership in this mission.
Today, 7,699 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War. Using modern technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously returned by North Korean officials or recovered from North Korea by American recovery teams. Reagan’s name is recorded on the Courts of the Missing at the Punchbowl, along with the others who are missing from the Korean War. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for Americans who went missing while serving our country, visit the DPAA website at www.dpaa.mil, find us on social media at www.facebook.com/dodpaa or call (703) 699-1420/1169.
Reagan’s personnel profile can be viewed at