History Flight is Dedicated to Recovering Remains of American Soldiers

History Flight

Remains of 30 Service Members Killed in WWII Unearthed at Tarawa

by Jason Daley Smithsonian.com

The graves of 30 World War II Marines and sailors killed during the 1943 assault on the island of Betio, part of the Pacific atoll of Tarawa, have been located.

Audrey McAvoy at the Associated Press reports that the remains were discovered in March by searchers from the non-profit organization History Flight, a group dedicated to recovering the remains of missing American service members.

It’s believed most of the remains belonged to members of the 6th Marine Regiment. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced it will recover the bodies in July and bring them to its lab in Hawaii. There, forensic anthropologists will use DNA, dental records and other evidence to try and identify the remains.

History Flight was given permission to demolish an abandoned building during its search, and most of the remains were found underneath that structure. Many of the remains were found under the water table, meaning the team had to continuously pump water out of the excavation site during the dig.

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