Military Ends Pearl Harbor Project to Identify the Dead – Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii 2022-01-15 03:01:49 –

The hearse took six hours to complete a journey of about 200 miles in mid-Nebraska this year. There were people waving the American flag down the road lined with fire trucks to return home, which had been postponed for 80 years.

Inside was the remains of the U.S. Navy’s leading firefighter Louis Tushra, who was stationed in the USS Oklahoma’s main engine room when he sank during the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.

Using the DNA taken from his nephew, the Pentagon finally Identify the body of a 25-year-old sailor They were released from the Pentagon’s laboratory at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha in July and taken to Atkinson, north-central Nebraska, where Mr. Tushra was buried with his parents.

“It gives us a sense of the realization of the great sacrifices they have made,” Msgr said. James Gilg, 80, whose father was Mr. Tushra’s first cousin, said in an interview Monday.

While the country is observing the 80th anniversary of the attack that brought the United States into World War II, the military this week has a six-year project to identify those killed in Oklahoma of humans from ships named 355. Sailors and marines who said they matched the body.

Thirty-three of the ship’s crew could not identify the bodies by comparing them to DNA samples from relatives or dental records as part of a project that began in 2015 and said the authorities had completed.

According to the Pentagon, their bodies will be on Tuesday National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific In Hawaii, there is a site with the nickname Punchbowl. In total, 429 crew members from Oklahoma died after several torpedoes attacked the ship. Almost three times as many military personnel died in USS Arizona, which suffered the most losses from the attack.

Civilian researchers and military commanders discussed the findings of the project at a press conference on Monday at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. They said 13,000 bones were analyzed and cataloged after the military was approved to dismantle them in 2015.

“It is our responsibility as a nation to bring these seafarers and marines back to their families,” Captain Robert McMahon, head of the Navy’s casualty office, said at a meeting. “We sent them to war.”

A provocative attack on Pearl Harbor killed more than 2,400 Americans and hit the Pacific Fleet of the Navy based in Pearl Harbor. It hastened the United States’ entry into World War II, and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt called December 7 “living a notorious life.” The next day, Congress declared war on Japan.

Efforts to identify the bodies of seafarers and marines buried in sunken ships for decades have led to record loss and to their watery tombs, which some families said should not be disturbed. It was hampered by the difficulty of access.

However, advances in genetic testing have brought new optimism to families and the military. In addition to the 355 seafarers and marines identified during the project, six names matched between 2007 and 2010, the researchers said.

At a press conference, Kelly McKeeg, director of the Defense POW / MIA Defense POW Accounting Office, said at a press conference, “Currently, 361 families have the answer.”

Carrie Le Garde, the project’s chief anthropologist, said some of the crew’s medical and dental records were lost on board.

“Some of these service members can have difficulty finding living biological relatives,” Le Garde said.

According to the Pentagon, the bodies of nearly 82,000 U.S. military personnel from several wars have not yet been identified, the majority of which are from World War II. Separate efforts are underway to identify the crew of USS California and USS West Virginia that have been attacked by Pearl Harbor, military officials said.

Despite several generations after the attack on Pearl Harbor, some Oklahoma crew members are living sisters, brothers, nieces, and nephews who often share stories of relatives immediately.

“The work we do is for them,” she said.

Timothy McMahon, director of DNA operations for the military coroner system, said Monday that the people involved in the project were given keychains with pictures of unidentified military personnel.

According to the military, about 100 of the identified Oklahoma crew have not yet been recontained, and some of these delays have been caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Tushla’s family was notified that his body was identified in 2020. It was in time for them to plan a funeral with the extended family reunion this summer.

His relatives prepared ObituaryHe said he was working on a farm before joining the Navy. Tushla’s first enlistment was denied due to a tonsil infection. He was finally accepted by the Marines after undergoing a tonsillectomy.

In a letter to the Navy on January 20, 1942, his parents asked for a renewal a month after receiving a telegram stating that his son was missing.

According to the obituary, “We are very worried and would appreciate it if you could help us anyway,” his parents wrote. “Tell me if the Oklahoma ship is still being pulled up. We’ve always wondered if he got off with the ship.”

Monsignor Gilg, whose father was Tushra’s cousin, said he often heard stories about the sacrifices of his relatives during his growth.

“It gives you a connection to world history in a way you’ve never seen before,” he said of identification.

Jack Begg contributed to the research.

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