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The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, lost in World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Army Air Force Sgt. Charles R. Marshall, 19, of Martin, Ky., will be buried on June 8, in Ivel, Ky. On July 21, 1944, a B-24H Liberator aircraft, which carried nine crew members, including Marshall, was shot down and crashed while on a bombing raid against enemy targets in Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany. Of the nine crew members, six parachuted to safety; a seventh crewmen’s remains were recovered near Hadorf. Marshall and another crewman were not recovered. Attempts to recover their remains after the war were unsuccessful.
In 2009, a German national turned over human remains to a Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) investigating team that was in southern Germany. The German national claimed to have recovered human remains and aircraft wreckage from the crash site southwest of Munich.
In 2012, a JPAC recovery team excavated the suspected crash site southwest of Munich, locating additional human remains and aircraft wreckage, including military identification tags bearing Marshall’s name.
To identify the remains of Marshall, scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory (AFDIL) used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools such as dental comparisons and mitochondrial DNA, which matched Marshall’s uncle.
Today there are more than 400,000 American service members that were killed during WWII, the remains of more than 73,000 were never recovered or identified.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1169.