Indiana soldier’s remains identified 75 years after attack on Pearl Harbor

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Photo of Paul Nash courtesy of Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An Indiana solider will finally be buried with full military honors 75 years after he was killed during the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced on Thursday that the remains of Navy Fire Controlman 1st Class Paul A. Nash, 26, of Carlisle, Indiana have been identified.

Nash’s remains will be flown back to Indiana, and he will be buried on July 9 in Sullivan.

On December 7, 1941, Nash was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. The USS Oklahoma quickly capsized after it was hit by multiple torpedoes. As a result, 429 people were killed, including Nash.

Navy personnel recovered the remains of the deceased crew and buried them in two Hawaiian cemeteries.

In September 1947, members of the American Graves Registration Service (AGRS) dug up the remains of U.S. casualties from the two cemeteries and transferred them to the Central Identification Laboratory at Schofield Barracks.

At that time, they were only able to identify 35 men.

On June 15, 2015, DPAA personnel began exhuming the remains in hopes modern technology would allow them to identify more soldiers.

Scientists were able to identify Nash by using mitochondrial DNA as well as dental comparisons and circumstantial evidence.

Of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, more than 400,000 died during the war. 1.521 Hoosiers are still missing from WWII.

For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for Americans who went missing while serving our country, visit the DPAA website at http://www.dpaa.mil or call (703) 699-1420.

 

4 Fast Facts

  • Paul Nash was assigned to the USS Oklahoma
  • He died following the Pearl Harbor attack
  • His remains were recently identified thanks to modern technology
  • The remains will be sent to Indiana and he will be buried with full military honors

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