Marine killed in WWII, Identified 74 years later and Laid to Rest

+15 votes
Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Albert Strange, killed during World War II, has now been accounted for.

In November 1943, Strange was assigned to Company E, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Strange died on the first day of the battle, Nov. 20, 1943.

Interment services are pending; more details will be released 7-10 days prior to scheduled funeral services.

DPAA is grateful to History Flight, Inc. for their partnership in this mission.
Strange's name is recorded on the Tablets of the Missing at the NCMP, an American Battle Monuments Commission cemetery, along with the others killed or lost in WWII. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced, in 2017, that U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Private First Class Albert Strange, killed during World War II, has been accounted for.

Re-interment: December 2017 (remains have been identified, 2017)
Cave City Cemetery, Cave City, Barren County, Kentucky  USA
WikiTree profile: Albert Strange
asked Dec 7, 2017 in The Tree House by Russ Gunther G2G6 Mach 5 (53,010 points)
edited Dec 7, 2017 by Russ Gunther

4 Answers

+12 votes
Best answer

Found this on Facebook dated yesterday Dec 6, 2017: 

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. The 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio between 1946 and 1947, but Strange’s remains were not identified. 

In May 2017, DPAA, through a partnership with History Flight, Inc., returned to Betio to conduct excavations of osseous remains through various advanced investigative techniques. The remains were sent to DPAA for analysis.

To identify Strange’s remains, scientists from DPAA used dental, anthropological and chest radiograph comparison analysis, which matched his records, as well as circumstantial and material evidence.

answered Dec 7, 2017 by Dorothy Barry G2G6 Pilot (885,420 points)
selected Dec 8, 2017 by Russ Gunther
oh my goodness Russ,  thank you for sharing this tremendous event.  And thanks Dorothy for giving us the picture of this warrior and defender of freedom.  

I can't imagine the mixture of emotions his family must be feeling.
Thanks Russ for Best Answer!!
+12 votes
Thank you for sharing this! It's amazing to me that they were able to find his body even after 74 years and thus able to bring him home to family.
answered Dec 7, 2017 by Amanda Frank G2G6 Mach 2 (29,300 points)
+3 votes
What a moving story.  Thanks so much for sharing this.
answered Dec 8, 2017 by Caryl Ruckert G2G6 Mach 1 (14,940 points)
+3 votes
Semper Fi, Marine - good to see another soldier brought home to rest. I'm an Army man myself, but got a lot of respect for those who were in the Marines. Amazing story on how they proved it was him, and I'm sure the family feels some closure knowing how his story ended.
answered Dec 8, 2017 by Scott Fulkerson G2G6 Pilot (307,860 points)

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