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Remains of pilot missing since 1968 identified

Dec. 9, 2013 - 03:52PM   |  
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The Defense Department announced Monday that it has identified the remains of a pilot missing since a 1968 strike mission in Laos.

Col. Francis J. McGouldrick Jr., of New Haven, Conn., will be buried Dec. 13 at Arlington National Cemetery, Va.

McGouldrick was flying on a night strike mission in a B-57E Canberra, when his aircraft collided with another over Savannakhet Province. He was never seen again and listed as missing in action, according to the Defense Department.

In July 1978, following the end of the Vietnam War, a military review board amended his status from MIA to presumed killed in action.

On April 8, 2007, a joint American and Laotian team located a possible crash site near Keng Keuk, Laos. Between October 2011 and May 2012, teams excavated the site three times and recovered human remains and aircraft wreckage.

The Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory identified the remains using circumstantial evidence and forensic identification.

There are still 1,644 American service members unaccounted for from the Vietnam War, according to the Defense Department.

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