Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO)
announced today that the remains of a serviceman,
missing in action from World War II, have been
identified and returned to his family for burial
with full military honors.
Army Air Forces Capt. George W.
Grismore, 30, of Salt Lake City, will be buried at
sea Nov. 17 off the coast of Newport Beach, Calif.
A memorial service in Salt Lake City will precede
the burial on Nov. 13. On March 12, 1945, Grismore
and five crew members aboard a C-47A Skytrain
departed Tanauan Airfield on Leyte, Philippines, on
a resupply mission to guerilla troops. Once cleared
for takeoff, there was no further communication
between the aircrew and airfield operators. When
the aircraft failed to return, a thorough search of
an area ten miles on either side of the intended
route was initiated. No evidence of the aircraft
was found and the six men were presumed killed in
action. Their remains were determined to be
non-recoverable in 1949.
In 1989, a Philippine National
Police officer contacted U.S. officials regarding a
possible World War II-era aircraft crash near
Leyte. Human remains, aircraft parts and artifacts
were turned over to the local police, then to U.S.
officials at the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command.
From 1989 to 2009, JPAC sought
permission to send teams to the crash site but
unrest in the Burauen region precluded on-scene
investigations or recovery operations. Meanwhile,
JPAC scientists continued the forensic process,
analyzing the remains and physical evidence already
Among other forensic
identification tools and circumstantial evidence,
the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used
mitochondrial DNA—which matched that of Grismore’s
nephew—in the identification of his remains.
At the end of the war, the U.S.
government was unable to recover and identify
approximately 79,000 Americans. Today, more than
72,000 are unaccounted-for from the conflict.
For additional information on the
Defense Department’s mission to account for missing
Americans, call 703-699-1420 or visit the DPMO web
site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo .