Wed, Jun 22, 2005
The Department of
Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced Wednesday
that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the
Vietnam War, have been identified and returned to his family for
burial on July 3rd at Savannah Georgia. He is Air Force Captain
David J. Phillips Jr. of Miami Beach, Fla.
On July 3, 1966, Phillips was attacking enemy targets over Kien
Giang Province, South Vietnam, when his F-5 "Freedom Fighter" was
hit by enemy ground fire and crashed. Phillips was unable to eject
from his aircraft before the crash, and radio contact was lost.
Heavy enemy ground fire precluded a search at the time.
From 1993 to 2000, joint U.S.-Vietnamese teams conducted four
investigations for information on Phillips' disappearance.
Interviews of 10 villagers over seven years led to the probable
location of the crash site. One of the teams found fiberglass
pieces that were consistent with the survival kit from the ejection
seat on an F-5 aircraft.
During two excavations in 2003 and 2004,human remains, as well
as aircrew-related artifacts and personal effects, were recovered
by teams from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC).
Laboratory analysis of the remains by forensic scientists at JPAC
led to Phillips' identification.
Of the 88,000 Americans missing from World War II, the Korean
War, the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and Desert Storm, 1,833 are
from the Vietnam War, with 1,397 of those within the country of
Vietnam. Another 750 Americans have been accounted for in Southeast
Asia since the end of the Vietnam War. Of the Americans identified,
524 are from within Vietnam.
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