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Old 10th April 2007, 08:52
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Ten Missing WWII Airmen are Identified

NEWS RELEASES from the United States Department of Defense

April 09, 2007
Media Contact: (703) 697-5131/697-5132
Public/Industry(703) 428-0711

Ten Missing WWII Airmen are Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced today that the
remains of ten U.S. servicemen, missing in action from World War II, have been
identified and will be returned to their families for burial with full military

They are 2nd Lt. Raymond A. Cooley, of Leary, Texas; 2nd Lt. Dudley R. Ives, of
Ingleside, Texas; 2nd Lt. George E. Archer, of Cushing, Okla.; 2nd Lt. Donald F.
Grady, of Harrisburg, Pa.; Tech. Sgt. Richard R. Sargent, of North Girard, Pa.;
Tech. Sgt. Steve Zayac, of Cleveland, Ohio; Staff Sgt. Joseph M. King, of
Detroit, Mich.; Staff Sgt. Thomas G. Knight, of Brookfield, Ill.; Staff Sgt.
Norman L. Nell, of Tarkio, Mo.;and Staff Sgt. Blair W. Smith, of Nu Mine, Pa.;
all U.S. Army Air Forces.The dates and locations of the funerals are being set
by their families.

Representatives from the Army met with the next-of-kin of these men in their
hometowns to explain the recovery and identification process and to coordinate
interment with military honors on behalf of the secretary of the Army.

On April 16, 1944, a B-24 Liberator crewed by these airmen was returning to the
aerodrome at Nadzab, New Guinea, after bombing enemy targets near Hollandia.The
aircraft was altering course due to bad weather and was proceeding to the
aerodrome at Saidor, but it never returned to friendly lines.

In late 2001, the U.S. Embassy in Papua New Guinea notified the Joint POW/MIA
Accounting Command that wreckage of a World War II bomber had been found in
Morobe Province.Early the next year, a JPAC team surveyed the site and found
aircraft wreckage and remains.They also collected more remains and Grady's
identification tag from local villagers who had found the items at the crash

Later in 2002, a JPAC team began excavating the crash site and recovered remains
and crew-related items, including identification tags for Knight and Smith.The
team was unable to complete the recovery, and another JPAC team re-visited the
site two weeks later to complete the excavation.The team found additional
remains and identification tags for Sargent and King.

Among dental records, other forensic identification tools and circumstantial
evidence, scientists from the JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification
Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA in the identification of the remains.

For additional information on the Defense Department's mission to account for
missing Americans, visit the DPMO Web site at or call
(703) 699-1169.
Srecko Bradic
Skype: sreckobradic
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