Sunday, November 15, 2015

Report of Interment

My maternal great-uncle was killed in action during World War II on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas. Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General. The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental United States. The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home.

These are two copies of the same form, filed on different dates.  According to these forms my great-uncle's grave was marked with a cross and identification tags were buried with his body and attached to the grave marker.  On the form that was filed on 27 January 1945, it mentions a personal letter dated 17 March 1945.  Was this used as a form of identification?  Who wrote the letter?  On that same form, 23 July 1944 was used as the date of death and then corrected to 22 July 1944.  The forms  state the names of the two soldiers buried beside him.  On his right in grave number 11, James W. Beatty, and on his left in grave number 9, George Daniels.  The personal effects that were found on my great-uncle's body were two keys, one billfold, miscellaneous papers, and $4.07 (about $55.05 today).

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