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Remains of US soldiers identified

The remains of two US Army soldiers who had been missing in Vietnam for nearly 40 years have been identified.

The bodies Chief Warrant Officer Donald Wann of Shawnee, Oklahoma, and 1st Lieutenant Paul Magers of Billings, Montana, were identified through DNA testing by the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory in Hawaii.

Wann and Magers were killed on June 1 1971 when the AH-1 Cobra helicopter they were flying as part of a rescue mission was shot down in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam, the US Army said.

Wann's daughter, Shannon Wann Plaster, said she has been trying since the early 1990s to find her father, and had known since July 2008 that human remains found near the suspected crash site could include his.

Mrs Plaster, 49, said of being told of confirmation of the discovery: "It was just emotional - joy, happiness and just relief. It felt like a million pounds off my chest and off my back."

Attempts to contact Magers' relatives in Montana were unsuccessful, but the Montana National Guard issued a statement on their behalf, saying they were "extremely grateful and honoured by the outpouring of support and condolences".

(US Department of Defence)


From Belfast Telegraph