The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, accounted for from World War II, are those of Army Pfc. Lewis E. Price, 23, of Rogersville, Tennessee. Price was accounted for on Sept. 24, 2018.
In November, 1944, Price was a member of Company E, 2nd Battalion, 109th Infantry Regiment, 28th Infantry Division, which moved into the Hürtgen Forest in Germany, to relieve U.S. forces who had been fighting for weeks. The fighting in and around the forest was frequently chaotic, and while details surrounding his loss are sparse, he was reported missing in action as of Nov. 6, 1944.
After the war, the American Graves Registration Command extensively searched the Hürtgen Forest, to locate Price’s remains. Unable to make a correlation with any remains found in the area, he was declared non-recoverable.
In 2015, a historian from DPAA analyzed documentation of X-2736 Neuville, an unidentified set of remains recovered from the Hürtgen Forest in 1946. Army officials had been unable to identify the remains following the war and subsequently interred them as an unknown Soldier at Neuville, present-day Ardennes American Cemetery in Belgium.
Based upon the original recovery location and evidence from the personal effects associated with X-2736, the DPAA historian determined that there was a possible association between the remains and Price. In June 2016, the Department of Defense and American Battle Monuments Commission disinterred X-2736 and accessioned the remains to the laboratory for identification
To identify Price’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) analysis, dental and anthropological analysis, as well as circumstantial and material evidence.
DPAA is grateful the American Battle Monuments Commission for their partnership in this mission.
Of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, more than 400,000 died during the war. Currently there are 72,778 service members (approximately 26,000 are assessed as possibly-recoverable) still unaccounted for from World War II. Price’s name is recorded on the Tablets of the Missing at the Netherlands American Cemetery, an American Battle Monuments Commission site in Margraten, Netherlands, along with the other who are missing from WWII. Although interred as an Unknown, Price’s grave was meticulously cared for by ABMC for 70 years. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.
For information on funeral services, contact the Army Casualty office at (800) 892-2490.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing 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.