Memphis Airman from Vietnam War identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of Air Force pilots Maj. James E. Sizemore of Lawrenceville, Ill., and Maj. Howard V. Andre Jr., of Memphis, Tenn., have been identified and will be returned to their families for burial with full military honors on Sept. 23 at Arlington National Cemetery.

The name of Maj. Howard V. Andre is etched on the wall at the Vietnam War Memorial in Nashville, Tenn.  The memorial is seen in the reflection on the wall. (Photo by Lee Roberts)
The name of Maj. Howard V. Andre is etched on the wall at the Vietnam War Memorial in Nashville, Tenn. The memorial is seen in the reflection on the wall. (Photo by Lee Roberts)

On July 8, 1969, Sizemore and Andre were on a night armed reconnaissance mission when their A-26A Invader aircraft crashed in Xiangkhoang Province, Laos. Both men died in the crash but their remains were unaccounted for until April 2013.

In 1993, a joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic team investigated an aircraft crash site in Laos. They recovered aircraft wreckage from an A-26. The team was not able to conduct a complete excavation of the site at that time.

Twice in 2010, joint U.S./Lao People’s Democratic Republic teams conducted excavations of the crash site recovering human remains, aircraft wreckage, personal effects and military equipment associated with Sizemore and Andre.

In the identification of the remains, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools, such as dental comparison – which matched Sizemore’s records.

There are more than 1,640 American service members that are still unaccounted-for from the Vietnam War.

For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, call 703-699-1169 or visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo.

Former Veterans Affairs Commissioner for Tennessee Fred Tucker told Lead230.com that Andre was among 44 Tennesseans unaccounted for following the war.  The state’s Vietnam Memorial was dedicated Nov. 10, 1985.  The memorial is located in War Plaza in Nashville, Tenn., and includes the names of the missing, It is an eight-foot bronze statue with a name wall and time capsule, according to Tucker.

(Department of Defense News Release No. 670-13)

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