Category Archives: Missing Persons

DNA data from missing in 2011 tsunami will enter database

To lower the number still missing from the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, the National Police Agency will begin utilizing a nationwide database on unidentified bodies as early as July.
The NPA will compare data on missing people in the three prefectures of Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima, which were hit hard by the powerful tsunami, with its database.

Specialist international team to perform DNA analysis on Tuam Babies grave in west of Ireland

A SPECIALIST team will be brought in to perform DNA analysis on the remains found in the mass grave at the Mother and Baby Home in Tuam.
The bodies of 796 young children and babies were found in 2012 on the old grounds of the Bon Secours Mother and Baby home in Tuam, Co. Galway.

Falklands War: Experts bid to identify Argentine dead

Work will start later this month on identifying the bodies of unknown Argentine soldiers in the Falklands.
The International Committee of the Red Cross will take DNA samples from 123 graves in Darwin cemetery, which will be compared with those of relatives.

After 75 years, Utahn killed in Pearl Harbor comes home

The remains of U.S. Navy Musician 1st Class Elliott Deen Larsen, of Monroe, continue their journey home after arriving from Hawaii at the Salt Lake City International Airport in Salt Lake City on Thursday, May 25, 2017. Larsen died in the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, but it wasn’t until recently that his remains were identified through DNA testing.

He died in the Pearl Harbor attack. He’ll be buried Saturday in his MN hometown

An Emmons, Minn., sailor killed during the attack on Pearl Harbor is finally on his way home.
Navy Fireman 3rd Class Glaydon I.C. Iverson, 24, died on Dec. 7, 1941, aboard the USS Oklahoma at Pearl Harbor. His remains had been unidentified and buried in a plot at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific for more than 74 years.

Ceremony honors fallen service members identified through forensics

POW MIADOVER — They might have just appeared to be names on a list, but each name that was read over the public address system represented closure to the families of fallen U.S. service members from past wars and conflicts.
Each name meant that a soldier had returned home.
Dover Air Force Base hosted a Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Retreat Ceremony around the flag pole near the air traffic control terminal on Friday afternoon.

Documenting The Dead On The Arizona Border: Lonely Remains Are Matched To Lost Loved Ones

Blue Helix2On August 8 of this year, a U.S. Border Patrol agent tracking a group of illegal immigrants from Mexico came upon the lonely remains of what was likely a person who’d crossed the border into the U.S. some time ago. The remains were scattered, incomplete and the person they once comprised, was unidentified, unknown.

Forensic Teams In Greece Struggle To Identify Drowned Migrants

Penelope Miniati, head of the forensics science division works at the forensics science division of Hellenic Police in AthensATHENS — The Greek police’s criminal investigation department’s workload has surged since last October, as its forensics team scrambles to identify some of the hundreds of victims who have drowned making the short but dangerous journey from the shores of Turkey to outlying Greek islands.
The director of Greece’s forensic division, Penelope Miniati, told Reuters there are 85 DNA samples still to be processed and identified since October compared to normally dealing with just a “handful” every month.

Laboratory Artist Puts a Human Face on Unidentified Remains

unidentified remainsNationwide, about 4,400 unidentified remains are found each year—and more than 1,000 of those are still unidentified a year later, according to the National Institute of Justice, which maintains searchable databases of missing and unidentified persons (NamUs.gov). Medical examiners and local police departments most frequently become the stewards of unidentified remains. And each year, about 20 requests are made to the FBI Laboratory to develop facial approximations of unidentified individuals to help investigators ultimately put a name to a face.

Hopes for DNA extraction from treated bones

Committee-missing-personsThere is hope that remains of missing persons from the events of 1974 – that were treated with chemicals and were buried at the military cemetery in Lakatamia – will now be able to be identified.
The Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs, Fotis Fotiou, informed members of the press that samples of the skeletal remains had been sent to the US Department of Defence’s laboratory, which requested the type of chemical used in order to try and isolate DNA samples.

Recovery Mission

Recovery Mission…The painstaking case of lost and found for the Van Bendegom family is only one of many that is playing out around the world. There may eventually be thousands more. Over fifteen hundred Americans who fought and died in the Vietnam War have yet to be identified; and that is only one war. Government officials estimate there are another 7800+ unidentified lost in the Korean War, and 125+ missing soldiers who fought and died in the Cold War. More than 73,000 service personnel from World War II still remain unidentified today…

Decades later, two area servicemen laid to rest thanks to DNA advances

USS OklahomaBack then, the Navy identified fewer than three dozen killed on the Oklahoma. Two years later, salvage workers righted the crippled hulk and gathered skeletal remains from its hold. Bones from 388 still-missing crewmen were compiled in 61 caskets and, in 1950, buried together in the Punchbowl, the national military cemetery in Honolulu.

Bringing up the bodies in Guatemala

Skeleton in GuatemalaIn February 2012, Edgar Hernandez walked with a team of archaeologists beneath the lush cypress forests of a military base in Coban, a city of 250,000 that sits in a high misty valley in the mountains of central Guatemala. They cleared grass from areas where the land seemed to dip, as though the soil had been disturbed decades before. Then, surrounded by soldiers, the archaeologists staked out thin exploratory trenches and began to dig.

Inside the New Mission to Identify Pearl Harbor’s Fallen, 74 Years Later

73 years after _Pearl_Harbor_Identification_hb_151207_12x5_1600Seventy-four years ago today, Japanese planes attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, taking the lives of more than 2,400 U.S. service members and plunging the United States into World War II.

A macabre task to identify the shipwrecked

The shy children from a dog-eared photograph found in the pocket of a migrant drowned off Italy may never know what happened to the man who might have been their father. Putting names to those who die while crossing the Mediterranean to Europe is a huge challenge for forensic scientists, with clues sometimes limited to no more than a scar or a solitary tatoo.