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The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, killed during the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Army Pfc. William V. Giovanniello, 22, of Brooklyn, New York, will be buried Nov. 10 in Port Jervis, New York. On April 25, 1951, Giovanniello was a member of Company F, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, when his unit was situated along a defensive line west of Chorw’on, South Korea, and was attacked by the Chinese People’s Volunteer Force (CPVF) and Korea People’s Army (KPA). The unit was forced to move south of the Yongpyong River and assemble near the town of Changgo-ri. Giovanniello’s battalion established a roadblock to cover the movement and it was during this time it was found that Giovanniello was not with his unit and was reported missing in action.
Giovanniello’s name did not appear on any prisoner of war lists provided by the CPVF or KPA, and no repatriated American prisoners of war had information regarding Giovanniello as a prisoner of war.
Although the U.S. Army Graves Registration Service hoped to recover American remains that remained north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone after the war, administrative details between the United Nations Command and North Korea complicated recovery efforts. An agreement was made and in September and October 1954, in what was known as Operation Glory, remains were returned. However, Giovanniello’s remains were not included and he was declared non-recoverable.
In June 1951, an unidentified set of remains, previously recovered from Yang Mun-Ni, were buried in the Tanggok United Nations Military Cemetery and labeled “Unknown X-1219.”
In Dec. 2014, the Department of Defense approved the disinterment of “Unknown X-1219.” The remains were disinterred May 16, 2016 and were sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.
To identify Giovanniello’s remains, scientists from DPAA used circumstantial and anthropological evidence, as well as dental and chest radiograph comparison analysis, which matched his records.
Today, 7,784 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War. Using advances in technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously turned over by North Korean officials or recovered by American teams.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for 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.