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Airman Missing from Vietnam War Identified

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Between 1984 and 1996, the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) received human remains tentatively linked to Thorpe and the other crew members from various sources including refugees from the Vietnam War and Vietnamese citizens. Lacking advanced scientific tools and complete records during this time period, JPAC was unable to make an individual identification of Thorpe's remains, so he was buried as part of a group at Arlington. Other remains associated with the entire group were  held at JPAC's laboratory for future testing.

As DNA testing procedures improved in the late 1990s, JPAC's forensic anthropologists applied the latest technologies from the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory to include mitochondrial testing, a sample of which matched the DNA from Thorpe's sister. His dental records also helped confirm the identification.

With the accounting of this airman, 1,687 service members still remain missing from the Vietnam War.

For additional information on the Defense Department's mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call 703-699-1169.

Airman Missing from Vietnam War Identified [ http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=14582 ]

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