Below are historical reports about POW burials at Cabanatuan POW Camp, Government FAQs on the identification process and the need for Family Reference Samples. Information is provided by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) and other agencies of our Federal Government including the Department of Defense (DoD). 

Facts about U.S. Casualties and Burials of POWs at Cabanatuan POW Camp #1 Philippines

Thousands of United States soldiers, sailors, Marines, and civilians were taken prisoners of war (POW) by the Japanese in the Philippine Islands between 7 December 1941 and 8 May 1942. The saga of the battle for the Philippines and the horrible treatment the survivors received in Japanese POW camps is the subject of numerous books and articles, but there are few resources that articulate graves registration operations, especially those focused on recovering and identifying the remains of U.S. servicemen who perished at the Cabanatuan Prisoner of War Camps. The details concerning the circumstances under which U.S. prisoners held at Cabanatuan lived and died were difficult and complicated, as were the attempts to disinter and identify their remains after the war’s end. As a result of these complications, when the Cabanatuan Project ended in 1951, 1,007 service members and civilians remained unidentified from among the 2,764 burials at the Camps. (External Link to the Report)

How do I donate DNA as a Family Reference Sample (FRS)?

The process of donating a DNA reference sample is easy, painless and free-of-charge. If you are the relative of a missing service member, you should contact your Service Casualty Office (SCO) for information on how to provide a DNA sample. The SCO will mail to your home, a DNA donor kit that contains a donor consent form, instruction form, three buccal (cheek) swabs and a shipping envelope. All you have to do is fill out the paperwork, rub the inside of your cheek with the swabs, place the swabs back in their containers and affix the label. The collected samples are then placed in a pre-addressed and pre-paid envelope and mailed to AFMES-AFDIL at Dover AFB, Delaware. That’s it! It’s a completely painless process. (Link for more Information)

I just found out that I have a relative who is Missing In Action or buried as an "Unknown", who do I contact for more information or to request a FRS kit be sent to me?

Service Casualty Offices serve family members. Each military department maintains a service casualty office. The Department of State does the same for civilians. The officials in these offices serve as primary liaisons for families concerning personnel recovery and accounting. Full-time knowledgeable civilians who have worked this issue for many years, help answer family member questions. Military officials also assist and help explain the methods used to account for families' missing loved ones. Each office dedicates for family use the following addresses and telephone numbers:

U.S. Army

(Including WW2 US Army Air Corps)
Department of the Army 
Attn Past Conflicts AHRC-PDC-R 
1600 Spearhead Div. Ave, Dept. 450 
Fort Knox, KY 40122-5405 
Tel: (800) 892-2490 

U.S. Marine Corps 
Headquarters U. S. Marine Corps 
Manpower and Reserve Affairs (MFPC)
Personal and Family Readiness Division 
2008 Elliot Road 
Quantico, VA 22134-5103 
Tel: (800) 847-1597 

U.S. Navy
Navy Personnel Command Casualty Assistance Division (PERS-13)
5720 Integrity Drive
Millington, TN 38055-0000
Tel: (800) 443-9298

State Department

(For Civilian Cases)
U.S. Department of State CA/OCS/ACS/EAP
SA-17, 10th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20522-1707
Phone: (202) 485-6106