ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – A World War II U.S. Army soldier from Elizabethton was identified after his remains were recovered overseas.
A release from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) states that U.S. Army Pfc. Mark P. Wilson was accounted for on Sept. 12, 2022. Wilson, who was 20 years old at the time of his death, was reported missing in action in November 1944.
Wilson’s battalion had been tasked with holding the town of Kommerscheidt, Germany in the Hürtgen Forest. The DPAA reports that his body was unable to be recovered, and he was never reported as a prisoner of war by the Germans. As a result, Wilson was declared killed in action following the war.
Despite efforts by the American Graves Registration Command and investigations in the Hürtgen area between 196 and 1950, Wilson’s remains were never recovered or identified. The release states that he was declared “non-recoverable” in November 1951.
Decades later, a historian with the DPAA found that a set of unidentified remains recovered from Kommerscheidt in 1947 could have belonged to Wilson. Those remains had been buried in the Ardennes American Cemetery in Belgium.
The remains were disinterred in 2021 and sent to the DPAA laboratory in Nebraska to be identified. According to the agency, scientists used anthropological analysis and circumstantial evidence to identify Wilson’s remains. Multiple forms of DNA analysis were also used, the release states.
Now identified, Wilson will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery. The date for that burial has yet to be set.
Those seeking family and funeral information are asked to call the Army Casualty Office at 800-892-2490.