The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Army Cpl. Donald E. Matney, 18, of Seymour, Missouri, will be buried Nov. 19 in his hometown. On July 20, 1950, Matney was a member of Company H, 2nd Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division when his unit attempted to delay enemy from capturing a town near Taejon, South Korea. Enemy infantry and armor units were able to force the division out of the town and block withdrawal routes. Matney was reported missing in action following the attacks.
In March 1951, unidentified remains were recovered by a local resident in Taejon and designated X-739. They were moved to the United Nations Military Cemetery in Tanggok, South Korea, where identification was attempted. Due to a lack of substantiating evidence, the remains were not able to be identified and interred at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii.
In May 2016, the remains were disinterred from the cemetery and sent to the laboratory for identification.
To identify Matney’s remains, scientists from DPAA used dental, chest radiograph comparison and anthropological analysis, which matched his records and circumstantial evidence.
Today, 7,783 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.
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.