The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
He is Cpl. Librado Luna, U.S. Army, of Taylor, Texas. He will be buried on Nov. 25 in Taylor.
Representatives from the Army's Mortuary Office met with Luna’s next-of-kin to explain the recovery and identification process, and to coordinate interment with military honors on behalf of the Secretary of the Army.
In late November 1950, Luna was assigned to the 8th Army Ranger Company, 25th Infantry Division, then attached to B Company, 89th Medium Tank Battalion as part of Task Force Dolvin. The 8th Army Ranger Company was deployed on Hill 205 in Kujang County along the leading edge of the U.S. position. On November 25, the Chinese Army struck in force in what would become known as the Battle of the Ch’ongch’on River. Task Force Dolvin, including the 8th Army Ranger Company, was forced to withdraw to the south. Of the 91 men from B Company, 89th Medium Tank Battalion and the 8th Army Ranger Company, only 22 made it to safety. Ten men, including Luna, went missing on November 26 near Hill 205.
In 1998, a joint U.S.-Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea (D.P.R.K.) team, led by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC), excavated a burial site in Kujang County where a girl had uncovered possible American remains on a hill near her school. The site correlates with the area where members of the 8th Army Ranger Company fought as part of Task Force Dolvin. The team recovered human remains and non-biological material evidence.
Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA in the identification of Luna’s remains.
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) 699-1420.