Marine Corps Reserve Capt. James W. Boyden, missing from World War II, has now been identified.
On Feb. 14, 1944, Boyden was a member of the Marine Torpedo Bombing Squadron 233, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force, as the pilot of a Grumann torpedo bomber on an experimental mission to destroy enemy shipping in Simpson Harbor, New Britain. The mission included 26 bombers deploying aircraft-borne mines to disrupt the flow of men and material to the sprawling Japanese base at Rabaul. Boyden's plane took off at 2:30 in the morning as part of the last wave of attacking torpedo bombers. Once over the harbor, the American aircraft encountered intense anti-aircraft fire and sustained heavy losses. At the end of the battle, six bombers and their 18
crewman failed to return from their mission, including Boyden.
On Feb. 15, 1945, War Department officials declared Boyden deceased. The American Battle Monuments Commission memorialized Boyden and the other missing crewmen by inscribing their names on the Walls of the Missing, Manila American Cemetery and Memorial.
In 2016, personnel from DPAA conducted an excavation of a possible crash site and sent the remains to the DPAA laboratory for analysis.
Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used in the
identification of his remains.
Interment services are pending.
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