WASHINGTON (AFP) – Sixty years after vanishing on the battlefields of the Korean War and 20 years after being shipped back in a coffin, the remains of a US soldier have been identified using DNA testing.
The Pentagon said Monday it had identified Corporal A.V. Scott, who went missing in 1951 at age 27 and was sent back in one of 208 coffins bearing the remains of 200 to 400 soldiers returned between 1991 and 1994.
It said he had been captured east of Seoul following an attack by Chinese communist forces and marched north to a prisoner-of-war camp in Suan County, North Korea, where he died, according to fellow soldiers.
“North Korean documents turned over with the boxes indicated the remains were exhumed near Suan County, which correlates with Scott’s last known location,” the defense department said in a statement.
But it was not until 2011, when DNA testing and dental comparisons with his cousins were made, that Scott was positively identified.
He will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, on June 22.
More than 2,000 US soldiers died as prisoners of war during the 1950-1953 war and nearly 8,000 remain missing from the conflict, according to the Pentagon.