Military News

Friday, May 22, 2015

Soldier Missing From Korean War Accounted For

DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2015 – The Department of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced today that the remains of a U.S. soldier missing from the Korean War have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors, according to a DoD news release.

Army Cpl. Richard L. Wing, 19, of Toledo, Ohio, will be buried June 5, in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington D.C., according to the release.

In late November 1950, Wing was assigned to Company H, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, which was deployed north and southeast of the town of Kunu-ri, North Korea, when their defensive line was attacked by Chinese forces, forcing the unit to withdraw south to a more defensible position, near the town of Sunchon, the release said.

Reported Missing in Action

Before they could disengage, the 1st Cavalry Division was forced to fight through a series of Chinese roadblocks known as “the Gauntlet,” according to the release. Wing was reported missing in action after the battle.

In 1953, returning American soldiers who had been held as prisoners of war reported that Wing had been captured by Chinese forces in November 1950 near Kunu-ri and died of dysentery in a prisoner of war camp known as Camp 5 in Pyokdong, North Korea, the release said.

Between 1991 and 1994, North Korea turned over to the U.S. 208 boxes of human remains believed to contain more than 400 U.S. servicemen who fought during the war, according to the release. North Korean documents, turned over at that time, indicated that some of the remains were recovered from the vicinity where Wing was believed to have died.

To identify Wing’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools, to include two forms of DNA analysis; mitochondrial DNA, which matched his sister and brother, and Y-STR DNA, which matched his brother, the release said.

Today, 7,852 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War, according to the release. Using modern technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously turned over by North Korean officials or recovered by American recovery teams.

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