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The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, who died while a prisoner of war during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Army Cpl. Billie J. Jimerson, 19, of Kerens, Texas, will be buried June 23 in Portland, Oregon. In late November, 1950, Jimerson was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, when his unit engaged with opposing forces near Anju, North Korea. He was reported missing in action as of Nov. 28, 1950, when he could not be accounted for.
Returning American prisoners of war reported that Jimerson was captured by the enemy, died in captivity and was buried at Camp 5, Pyoktong, North Korea.
In September 1954, a set of remains reportedly recovered from a prisoner of war cemetery at Camp 5 were sent to the Central Identification Unit in Japan for attempted identification and further processing. This set of remains was designated X-14400, and was determined unidentifiable in November 1955. The remains were transferred to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu and interred as a Korean War Unknown.
In February 2014 the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency requested the disinterment of Unknown X-14400 after a thorough historical and scientific analysis indicated that the remains could likely be identified. In June 2014 after receiving approval, X-14400 was disinterred from the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific and accessioned into the laboratory.
To identify Jimerson’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, including dental and chest radiograph comparison, as well as DNA analysis, including mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which matched a sister and a nephew.
Today, 7,745 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War. Using advances in technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously turned over by North Korean officials or recovered by American 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.