Monday, March 16, 2009

Soldier Missing From Korean War Is Identified

No. 170-09 March 16, 2009
Soldier Missing From Korean War Is Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

He is:
Sgt. 1st Class Patrick J. Arthur, U.S. Army, of Broken Bow, Neb. He will be buried on May 1st in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C.

Representatives from the Army's Mortuary Office met with Arthur's next-of-kin to explain the recovery and identification process on behalf of the secretary of the Army.

Arthur was a member of Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 38th Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division. In mid May 1951, elements of the 2nd ID were securing their positions on the No Name Line south of the Soyang River, South Korea, when the Chinese Army launched a major counter-offensive. The 2nd ID was forced to withdraw south to a more defensible position north and east of the Hongch'on River. During the withdrawal, Arthur was captured by enemy forces on May 18, 1951, and was marched north into North Korea. Arthur died of malnutrition and disease in July, and he was buried at the Suan Mining POW Camp near Pyongyang.

Between 1991-94, North Korea gave the United States 208 boxes of remains believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. servicemen. Accompanying some of the remains were Arthur's military identification tag and a denture fragment bearing his name.

Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA and dental comparisons in identifying some of the remains as Arthur's.

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.

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