PAMPANGA

US agency identifies missing Filipino’s remains

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The Defense Prisoners of War/Missing in Action (POW/MIA) Accounting Agency (DPAA) on Thursday, December 26, said that United States Army Sergeant Maximiano T. Lacsamana, of Macabebe, Pampanga, was killed during the Korean War and was accounted for, last September 30, 2019.

The DPAA, in its statement to SunStar Philippines, through public affairs non-commissioned officer in charge Sean Everette of SFC, USA, Outreach and Communications, said the identification was initially published on November 20, 2019.

It added in its statement that in late 1950, Lacsamana, a veteran of the Philippine Scouts during World War II, was a member of Company I, Third Battalion, 31st Regimental Combat Team, Seventh Infantry Division. His unit was engaged in intense fighting with the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces near Hagaru-ri, North Korea.

He was 37 when he was reported missing in action December 3, 1950. Following the war, his remains could not be recovered.

The DPPA shared that on July 27, 2018, following the summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un in June 2018, North Korea turned over 55 boxes, purported to contain the remains of American service members killed during the Korean War. The remains arrived at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii on August 1, 2018, and were subsequently accessioned into the DPAA laboratory for identification.

To identify Lacsamana’s remains, scientists from DPAA used anthropological analysis, as well as circumstantial evidence. Additionally, scientists from the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and autosomal DNA (auSTR) analysis, the statement said.

Some 7,603 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War. Using modern technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously returned by Korean officials, recovered from Korea by American recovery teams or disinterred from unknown graves.

Lacsamana’s name is recorded on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, along with the others who are still missing from the Korean War. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.

For family information, contact the Army Casualty office at (800) 892-2490.

The DPAA added that Lacsamana will be buried in the spring of 2020 in the Philippines. The exact date and location have yet to be determined. For future funeral information, visit www.dpaa.mil. (JTD)


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