Missing WWII Marine Identified

Washington-The Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office of the Department of Defense recently announced the identification of lost WWII Marine Randolph Allen.

According to reports, the remains of Private First Class (Pfc.) Randolph Allen of the Marine Corps during the Second World War was recently identified. After the identification, the remains of the WWII Marine was then returned to his family with military honors.

Just this Tuesday, July 29, WWII Marine Randolph Allen – a native of Rush, Kentucky – was laid in his final resting place in Arlington National Cemetery.

As stated in a write-up released by the Department of Defense, WWII Marine Allen was assigned to be part of the 2nd Marine Division on November 1943. His unit, along with him, was shipped off to Betio, a small island in the Tarawa Atoll. Their mission was the secure the island against the Japanese army, which had a strong stance against the Allies. Intense fighting followed between the two warring sides. At the end, about a thousand Marines died and over two thousand more were wounded. Reportedly, WWII Marine Randolph Allen was killed in action on the 20th of November, 1943.

Immediately after the intense battle in Tarawa, US servicemen who were killed during the skirmish were buried in battlefield burial grounds. The released statement further went on that later on during WWII, Seabees, the the US Navy Combat Engineers, notably restructured the landscape of the said island for military use. As a result, many of the burial grounds could not be located when people from the US Army Graves Registration Service tried to after the war, in 1946.

The release went on to say that in was from November 12 to 27 last year when private organization History Flight did an excavation at a site on Betio believed to be a fighting position during the Second World War. It was in this excavation that History Flight was able to uncover five sets of remains along with military equipment and personal accouterments. Out of the five, one was that of a WWII Marine from the US while the rest were of the Japanese service. Additionally, two sets of military ID tags correlated to WWII Marine Randolph Allen were also found within the fighting position site.

The statement acceded that to identify the remains of WWII Marine Allen, the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command used circumstantial evidences as well as forensic identification devices like skeletal and dental comparison. The remains and that of the records of the WWII Marine matched.

Records have it that out of the 16 million Americans who served during the Second World War, over 400,000 died throughout the war. Out of that number, over 100,000 were killed in the Pacific Theater alone.

Heziel Pitogo

Heziel Pitogo is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE