As the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) continues to fulfill our nation’s promise and to better facilitate WWII families of the missing conversations, we present below are a set of DPAA Briefing videos describing the overall historic perspective of various battles/operations, addressing the number of unresolved losses and providing a high level mission progress update designed to educate and create two way conversations with WWII families of the missing.

 

 

More than 70,000 American service members are still missing from combat during World War II.  At least 25,000 of them were lost in Europe, North Africa, North and South America, Russia, and the waters surrounding those areas.  This video briefly describes the resources and methods personnel at the Europe-Mediterranean Directorate of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency use to research, investigate, and recover Americans missing in that expansive region.
 
Dr. Ian Spurgeon is a military historian with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency in Washington, D.C.  Since 2010, he has conducted research and analysis for cases of Americans missing since World War II, as well as investigated battlefields and aircraft crash sites in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Okinawa, and Poland.

Transcript

Briefing Slides

 

From September 1944 to February 1945, soldiers from at least nine U.S. divisions battled German forces in the Hürtgen Forest, a roughly 70 square mile area of wooded, hilly terrain in Germany near the Belgian border.  It was one of the U.S. Army's longest battles during World War II, and led to more than 24,000 American casualties.  This video briefly explains how the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency's Hürtgen Forest Project has helped lead to the recovery and identification of more than 30 American soldiers previously missing from combat there, and what methods DPAA continues to use to find the more than 160 service members still unaccounted-for from that campaign.

Dr. Ian Spurgeon is a military historian with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. Since 2010, he has conducted investigations for the agency at World War II aircraft crash sites and battlefields in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Okinawa, and Poland. Currently, he specializes in resolving cases of American soldiers lost during ground combat in Germany, and in particular those missing from the Hürtgen Forest campaign.  

Transcript

Briefing Slides

 

This briefing covers available information on the American prisoners of war who died in transit from the Philippines to Japan aboard the prison ships Oryoku Maru, Enoura Maru, and Brazil Maru.  It summarizes the narrative of the voyages and the historical attempts to recover and identify those lost in transit.  It explains DPAA's current project, which aims to disinter and identify unidentified remains associated with these ships.

Dr. Kupsky joined the agency as a World War II historian in April 2010.  He conducted field investigations in Germany, the Netherlands, Indonesia, and the Philippines. He currently serves as WWII lead for the Research Support Division and also serves as DPAA’s lead researcher for the Philippines.

Briefing Slides

 

This briefing provides an overview of disinterments in the Europe-Mediterranean Directorate of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. The directorate disinterment managers, Mr. Josh Fennell and Dr. Sarah Barksdale, discuss the background, process, and goals of the agency’s disinterment program for Unknown remains from the European Theater of World War II.

Mr. Fennell is a World War II historian who has been with the agency since 2009. He currently serves as one of the disinterment managers in the Europe-Mediterranean Directorate, and he is a member of the Western Europe investigations team.

Dr. Barksdale is a World War II historian who joined the agency in 2016. She is currently a disinterment manager in the Europe-Mediterranean Directorate, and part of the Mediterranean investigations team.

Transcript

Briefing Slides

 

This briefing provides an overview of disinterment research and operations in the Indo-Pacific Directorate of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. Historian Dr. Aelwen Wetherby discusses the historical background, current operations, and goals of the agency’s disinterment program for Unknown remains recovered from the Pacific and China Burma India Theaters of World War II. 

Dr. Wetherby has been conducting disinterment research on behalf of the agency since 2013. She currently serves DPAA’s Indo-Pacific Directorate as a contracted historian with the Disinterment Team focusing on World War II Unknowns. 

Transcript

Briefing Slides