JPAC teams search for unaccounted-for Americans from the Vietnam War, World War II

Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command
Public Affairs Office
(808) 448-1934
Contact: Elizabeth Feeney

Aug. 12, 2011
Release # 11-15


JPAC teams search for unaccounted-for Americans from the Vietnam War, World War II

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii (Aug. 12, 2011) - Several archeological recovery and investigation teams from the U.S. Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) recently deployed to the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, Canada, the Republic of Vanuatu, the Federal Republic of Germany, and the Independent State of Papua New Guinea searching for Americans that remain unaccounted-for fῲom the Vietnam War and World War II. About 100 JPAC team members deployed from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, to investigate and excavate several ground and aircraft crash sites in search of more than 35 Americans.

Recovery teams search for human remains, life support items, and other material evidence (personal and military issued items) that may lead to the identification of Americans missing from past U.S. conflicts. Investigation teams authenticate leads from eyewitnesses, conduct field research, and gather information throughout the various locations to determine whether or not there will be a return visit for excavation at a later date.

Vietnam: Approximately 35 JPAC team members will excavate multiple sites associated with Vietnam War losses. Three recovery teams will search in the Quang Tri, Quang Nam, and Quang Ngai provinces at burial and aircraft crash sites for five Americans. The approximately 35-day long undertaking marks the 104th Joint Field Activity in Vietnam.

Canada: More than 25 personnel from JPAC and the U.S. Navy's Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit Two, Company 2-5, from Virginia Beach, Va., deployed to Botwood Harbor recently to search for three Americans that remain unaccounted-for from World War II. The team will conduct underwater excavations for 30 days at an aircraft crash site just north of Botwood in the Newfoundland province.

Vanuatu: A JPAC recovery team will search at two sites in Espiritu Santo for about 45 days. The team will excavate two aircraft crash sites in search of nine Americans that have been missing for more than 65 years.

Germany: A JPAC recovery team will excavate an aircraft crash site near the town of Bettenfeld for about 30 days in search of two Americans that have been missing for more than 65 years. In addition to JPAC members, military and civilian volunteers from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, have volunteered to assist the team with excavation and logistical operations.

Papua New Guinea: Two JPAC teams will investigate and excavate multiple sites in the Morobe and East Sepik provinces which are associated with World War II losses. An investigation team will authenticate eyewitness leads generated through historical research and conduct field research for 10 cases and more than 30 individuals in the East Sepik province. The recovery team will search an aircraft crash site in the Morobe province where nine Americans may have perished.

These missions were the last scheduled missions to deploy for Fiscal Year 2011.

Falling directly under the U.S. Pacific Command, JPAC is a jointly-manned organization of more than 400 military and civilian specialists that has, with its predecessor organizations, investigated and recovered missing Americans since the 1970's.

The ultimate goal of the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, and of the agencies involved in returning America's heroes home, is to achieve the fullest possible accounting of Americans lost during the nation's past conflicts.

"Until They Are Home"


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