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Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Emil T. Wasilewski – MIA WWII Veteran Identified

Airman Missing in Action from WWII Identified

            The 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 2nd Lt. Emil T. Wasilewski of Chicago will be buried on June 26 at Arlington National Cemetery.  On Sept. 13, 1944, Wasilewski and eight other crew members were on a B-17G Flying Fortress that crashed near Neustaedt-on-the-Werra, Germany.  Only one of the crewmen is known to have successfully parachuted out of the aircraft before it crashed.  The remaining eight crewmen were buried by German forces in a cemetery in Neustaedt.

Following the war, U.S. Army Graves Registration personnel attempted to recover the remains of the eight men, but were only able to move the remains of one man to a U.S. military cemetery in Holland.  In 1953, with access to eastern Germany restricted by the Soviet Union, the remains of the seven remaining unaccounted-for crewmen — including Wasilewski –were declared non-recoverable.

In 1991, a German national who was digging a grave in the cemetery in Neustaedt discovered a metal U.S. military identification tag and notified officials.  German burial law restricted further site investigation until 2007, when the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) surveyed the area.  In 2008, the site was excavated and the team recovered human remains and military equipment.

Scientists from the JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, including dental comparisons and Y-chromosome DNA — which matched that of Wasilewski’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 73,000 are unaccounted for from the conflict.

For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call 703-699-1420.

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About Posted by Susan Bainbridge

At age 6, Susan was destined to be a journalist and photographer. In 1980, Susan founded Bainbridge News and The Bainbridge Chronicle Newspaper. Bainbridge News specializes in Military and National Politics, including Military Funerals and Burials and Political Funerals and Burials. Susan has covered the White House, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. She has covered every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama. Recognized for her versatility, Susan has also covered finance, crime, civil rights events, marches, sports, musical events and more. In 1990, she established Bainbridge Photography, an On-Location photography company. In addition to military and political events, including Military and Political funerals and burials, Bainbridge Photography expanded into covering ALL funerals and burials, receptions, weddings, real estate, inventory, insurance, portrait, head shot, pets, fire and Hazmat. Miss Bainbridge believes in going the extra mile. "My Clients always come first." In 1980, Susan began her career in Washington, D.C., working for WMZQ Radio as a reporter and guest hostess from 1980 to 1985. Intrigued by radio, Susan wanted to write, freelancing for radio, television and print newspapers, including AP, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Northern Virginia Sun, The Press-Republicanand The Bainbridge Chronicle (established by Susan Bainbridge). In 1986, Susan worked at WDCA-TV Channel 20 as a guest hostess for "Eye On Washington." From 1990 to 1994, Susan reported and anchored for "The Arlington Weekly News." Additionally, she produced a segment for the G. Gordon Liddy Radio Show. A prolific writer, while in high school in 1977, Bainbridge wrote an episode for NBC's "Little House on The Prairie" entitled "Laura's Best Friend." Though the show's producers did not use the script then, NBC producers encouraged Susan to pursue a writing and journalism career. Susan is a member of the National Press Club, the National Press Photographer's Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Susan Bainbridge's recognitions include from former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton, former First Lady Nancy Reagan, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the late actor Lorne Greene, among many others. BAINBRIDGE NEWS was founded in 1980 by Susan Bainbridge (a sixth generation writer), a third generation journalist, a first generation photographer and a fourth generation entrepreneur. She is the first generation to establish a news business. Bainbridge News is dedicated in honor of Miss Bainbridge's late grandfather and idol, Mark S. Watson (The Baltimore Sun editor and war correspondent from 1920 to his death in 1966).

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