Airman Missing From World War II Identified (Schlegel)


Army Air Forces Capt. Albert L. Schlegel, missing from World War II, has now been accounted for.

On Aug. 28, 1944, Schlegel was the pilot and sole occupant of a P-51D Mustang aircraft, departing his base in England on a ground strafing mission to Strasbourg, France, when he radioed that he had been hit by heavy anti-aircraft fire and would need to bail from his aircraft. There was no further communication from Schlegel. Historical records indicated that locals in Valmy, France reported that an unknown American aviator was captured in their village that same evening.

On Nov. 18, 1944, a set of remains was found near a train station in Valmy. The remains were transferred to the American cemetery at Champigueul, and designated as X-73. On Dec. 6, 1948, the American Graves Registration Command declared the remains unidentifiable.

In January 2016, researchers determined that through advanced forensic technology, the remains might be identified, and X-73 was disinterred and the remains were sent to the DPAA laboratory in Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, for identification.

Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the identification of his remains.

Interment services are pending.

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