Explorer to lead dangerous expedition to recover MIA service members from WW II crash site

Jack Murphy
December 02, 2019 - 10:20 am
B-25 bomber

(Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Nestled between Burma, China, and Myanmar the province Arunachal Pradesh is India's most remote region in the far North-Eastern part of the country. The terrain is often mountainous and the rainfall heavy but that isn't going to stop explorer Clayton Kuhles and a small team from launching a risky expedition to recover the remains of American pilots who crashed there during World War II.

Kuhles believes he has identified the site of the B-25 bomber crash that killed Capt. John Porter,  Staff Sgt. Walter R. Oswalt,  Staff Sgt. Harry D. Tucker, Maj. Ralph L. Dewsnup, and Sgt. Harold W. Neibler on Dec. 10th 1943. This month, he will try to relocate the crash site and conduct a thorough assessment of the site with an archeologist, a historian, and a forensic anthropologist, according to the Associated Press.

Expeditions to repatriate the remains of MIA airmen are quite expensive but amazingly, their community raised over 70,000 dollars. With the finances in place, Khules odds seem good as he has already identified 20 crash sites in the past as well as accounted for 190 previously MIA servicemen. 

Ellen Vinson, a surviving family member from John Porter's family said that if the expedition is successful, “I’ll know every effort was made and hundreds more people will know what heroes those men were.”

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Reach Jack Murphy: jack@connectingvets.com or @JackMurphyRGR.