The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) 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. Marvin E. Omans, 20, of Clinton, Mo., will be buried June 24, in Little Rock, Ark. In late November 1950, Omans and elements of the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT) were deployed along the east side of the Chosin Reservoir near P’ungnyuri Inlet, in North Korea, when the unit was attacked by overwhelming enemy forces. On Dec. 1, 1950, remnants of the 31st RCT, known historically as Task Force Faith, began a fighting withdrawal to a more defensible position near Hagaru-ri, south of the reservoir. On Dec. 3, 1950, enemy forces attacked a defensive perimeter established by the 31st RCT. It was during this attack that Omans was reported missing.
Between 1991 and 1994, North Korea gave the United States 208 boxes believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. service members. North Korean documents, turned over with some of the boxes, indicated that some of the human remains were recovered from the area where Omans was last seen.
In the identification of Oman’s remains, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory (AFDIL) used circumstantial evidence, compiled by DPMO and JPAC researchers, and forensic identification tools, such as mitochondrial DNA-which matched Omans' sister and nephew.
Using modern technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously turned over by North Korean officials. More than 7,900 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War.
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.