POW/MIA

All those who fought and served their country when they received the call, were men and women of courage, judgment, integrity and dedication. Where does dedication end? You can never put an end to dedication. After all, those who remain Prisoners of War or are still Missing in Action are still serving with never ending dedication. For them, it can never be over. For us, we can never let their sacrifices, or them, be forgotten.
 

August 22, 2022

 

The POW/MIA flag flying in the breeze
 
 

MIA Update: The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced six burial updates and ten new identifications for service members who have been missing and unaccounted-for from World War II and Korea. Returning home for burial with full military honors are:

-- Army Pvt. Felix M. Yanez, 19, of Douglas, Arizona, was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 19th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division. He was killed in action on July 16, 1950, while fighting the North Korean People’s Army along the Kum River, north of Taejon, South Korea. Following the war, his remains could not be identified. He will be buried in Tucson, Arizona, on Sep. 3, 2022. Read about Yanez.


-- Army Air Forces Sgt. Herald R. Boyd, 25, Granger, Texas, was assigned to 350th Bombardment Squadron, 100th Bombardment Group, 8th Air Force. On Feb. 3, 1945, the B-17G Flying Fortress bomber on which Boyd was serving as a gunner crashed when it was struck by a ground rocket during a bombing mission in Berlin. Boyd’s body was not recovered, but one of the surviving crew members confirmed that he had been killed in the crash. The War Department issued a report of death on Jan. 12, 1946. He will be buried in Corpus Christi, Texas, on Sep. 17, 2022. Read about Boyd.


-- Navy Seaman 2nd Class John G. Bock, Jr., 18, of St. Louis, was assigned to the battleship USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft on Dec. 7, 1941. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Bock. He will be buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) in Honolulu on Sep. 27, 2022. Read about Bock.


-- Navy Fireman 2nd Class Edward E. Casinger, 21, of Senath, Missouri, was assigned to the battleship USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft on Dec. 7, 1941. The USS Oklahoma sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Casinger. He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, on Nov. 19, 2022. Read about Casinger.


-- Navy Shipfitter 2nd Class Claude R. Garcia, 25, of Ventura, California, was assigned to the battleship USS West Virginia, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft on Dec. 7, 1941. The USS West Virginia sustained multiple torpedo hits, but timely counter-flooding measures taken by the crew prevented it from capsizing. The attack on the ship resulted in the deaths of 106 crewmen, including Garcia. He will be buried in his hometown on a date yet to be determined. Read about Garcia.


-- Army Air Forces Sgt. Elvin L. Phillips, 23, of Salt Lake City, Utah, was assigned to 66th Bombardment Squadron, 44th Bombardment Group, 8th Air Force. On Aug. 1, 1943, the B-24 Liberator aircraft on which Phillips was serving as gunner crashed as a result of anti-aircraft fire during Operation Tidal Wave. Following the war, his remains could not be identified. He will be buried in Bluffdale, Utah, on a date yet to be determined. Read about Phillips.


-- Army Cpl. George T. Grimes, 19, was assigned to A Company, 1st Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division. He went missing in action on July 16, 1950, while fighting the North Korean People’s Army along the Kum River, north of Taejon, South Korea. Following the war, his remains could not be recovered and there is no evidence that he was a prisoner of war. The Army issued a presumptive finding of death on Dec. 31, 1953. Interment services are pending. Read about Grimes.


-- Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Roy C. Harms, 26, was assigned to 329th Bombardment Squadron, 93rd Bombardment Group, 8th Air Force. On Aug. 1, 1943, the B-24 Liberator aircraft he was piloting crashed as a result of anti-aircraft fire during Operation Tidal Wave. Following the war, his remains could not be identified. Interment services are pending. Read about Harms.


-- Army Air Forces Staff Sgt. Walter Nies, 23, was assigned to 96th Bombardment Squadron, 2nd Bombardment Group, 15th Air Force. On Jan. 24, 1944, the B-17F Flying Fortress bomber on which he was serving as a tail gunner was shot down by enemy fighters. The crew was captured by Germans, and Nies was among those sent to Stalag Luft 6 prisoner of war camp. Nies died on May 28, 1944, after being shot. Interment services are pending. Read about Nies.


-- Army Pvt. David S. Whipple, 23, was assigned to the 27th Materiel Squadron, 20th Air Base Group in the Philippines, when Japanese forces invaded the Philippine Islands in December 1941. Intense fighting continued until the surrender of the Bataan peninsula, when thousands of U.S. and Filipino service members were captured. They were subjected to the 65-mile Bataan Death March and held captive at Cabanatuan POW camp. According to prison camp and other historical records, Whipple died on July 26, 1942. Interment services are pending. Read about Whipple.


-- Army Cpl. David N. Defibaugh, 18, was assigned to C Company, 3rd Engineer Combat Battalion, 24th Infantry Division. He went missing in action on July 20, 1950, while his unit was forced to retreat near the vicinity of Taejon, South Korea. Following the war, his remains could not be recovered and there is no evidence that he was a prisoner of war. The Army issued a presumptive finding of death on Dec. 31, 1953. Interment services are pending. Read about Defibaugh.