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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. Robert S. Ferrell, U.S. Army, of Dallas, Texas. His burial date is being set by
Representatives from the Army met with Ferrell’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.
On February 12, 1951, Ferrell was assigned to Battery A, 503rd Field Artillery Battalion,
2nd Infantry Division, then occupying a position about 70 miles east of Seoul, South Korea. The
503rd was providing artillery support for friendly units coming under heavy attack by Chinese
Communist Forces. In danger of being overrun, the 503rd was forced to withdraw to the south.
Records indicate that Ferrell was captured near Hoengsong, South Korea during the fighting. He
later died in captivity at the Suan Mining POW camp located about 40 miles southeast of
Pyongyang, North Korea.
Between 1990 and 1994, the North Korean government repatriated what they claimed to
be 208 sets of remains, including a 1991 turnover of several servicemen recovered near the Suan
Mining POW camp. Ferrell’s remains, along with cold-weather clothing and uniform buttons
worn by U.S. infantry, were included in the 1991 repatriation.
Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from
JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA and
dental comparisons in the identification of Ferrell’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) 699-1169.