Navy Aviator Missing In Action From Vietnam War is Identifies

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) has announced that the remains of  Lt. Cmdr. James E. Plowman (USN), who was listed missing in action (MIA) from the Vietnam War, have been identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery.

The offical record:

On March 24, 1967, Plowman and a fellow officer departed the USS Kitty Hawk in their A-6A Intruder on a night strike mission of an enemy target in North Vietnam. Radar contact with their aircraft was lost over the Ha Bac Province as they were departing the target area. A pilot from another aircraft reported two missile warnings on his radar screen immediately before contact was lost with Plowman's aircraft.

Between 1993 and 1996, joint U.S.-Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) teams, led by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC), conducted three investigations in the province. The team interviewed two local villagers who saw the 1967 crash, and both men recalled seeing human remains at the site. The team also surveyed the purported crash site and found several small fragments of aircraft wreckage.

In 1996, another joint U.S./S.R.V. team excavated the suspected crash site. The team found human remains from amid the scattered wreckage. The team was also handed some remains by a local villager who claimed to have recovered it while scavenging the crater for metal.

Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA in the identification of the remains.

New Gulf War Syndrome Study

CNN reporting on a new report from the VA on the widely debated "Gulf War Syndrome" written by Johns Hopkins University's Institute of Medicine which is part of the National Academy of Sciences.  The report was authorized by Congress.

While has not read the report, the CNN piece actually seems to create more questions than answers.

National Cemeteries Get Online Maps

Federal Computer Week (FCW) is reporting that the Dept. of Veteran Affairs is now publishing online maps to better locate gravesites of veterans and dependents buried in national cemeteries.  The current site is at:

Currently there are 3 million veterans and dependents in the national cemeteries database.  This database will also include primate cemeteries and state veteran's cemeteries.  According to FCW some 1,000 new records are added every day, and there are currently over 5 million records in the database already.

The VA is planning to provide kiosk access at national cemeteries to make on-site searches quicker and easier for visitors.

Veterans History Project

The American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress has an amazing historical reference called the Veterans History Project.

The site has amazing content. You can see and hear veteran stories; conduct both simple and highly complex searches; browse photo libraries; study special focus topics like WWII Intelligence; get both student & teach reference material; and sign up to provide media content to the project.