Remains from WWII crash identified, to be buried Saturday
The remains of a soldier who was killed during World War II have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial, the Defense Department says.
Army Air Force Sgt. Charles Marshall, 19, of Martin, Ky., is to be buried Saturday with full military honors in Ivel, about five miles east of his hometown, according to a statement released Monday by the Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office.
Marshall and eight other crewmembers were on bombing raid aboard a B-24H Liberator when it was shot down over Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany, on July 21, 1944, the statement said. Six were able to parachute to safety, and a seventh crewman’s remains were recovered near Hadorf, leaving Marshall and one other crewman unaccounted for.
In 2009, a German national turned over human remains to Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command investigators working in southern Germany, the statement said. The person claimed to have recovered the remains and aircraft wreckage from a crash site southwest of Munich.
Three years later, a JPAC recovery team excavated the site and found additional remains and aircraft wreckage, including military identification tags with Marshall’s name.
Scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence, dental comparisons and mitochondrial DNA that matched Marshall’s uncle to positively identify the remains, the statement said.
More than 400,000 American servicemembers were killed during World War II. More than 73,000 remain unaccounted for or unidentified.