September 27, 2018
Updated on September 27, 2018 at 6:54 pm
The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency and the Republic of Korea held a Repatriation Ceremony at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. The ceremony will honor 64 fallen South Korean soldiers who fought during the Korean War.
The 64 sets of remains were recovered during joint recovery operations in North Korea between 1996 and 2005.
The MAKRI (Ministry of National Defense Agency for KIA (Killed In Action) Recovery and Identification) Commander Colonel Hak Ki Lee signs the repatriation papers. He is the last of the four to sign. The others are standing (l-r): United Nations Command Chief of Staff Major Gen. Mark Gillette, Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (also known as DPAA) Deputy Director Rear Admiral Jon C. Keitz and The Vice Minster of National Defense Choo Suk Suh.
Major General Sangbum Shin, left, shakes hands with WWII and Korean War vet. Lucio Sanico.
These are the 63 of 64 remains that are already on the plane.
This is the last box of remains about to be taken to a table where the United Nations flag will be replaced by a South Korean flag and then loaded onto the plane.
The United Nations flag is removed from the box of remains and folded. The South Korean flag was then placed over the box of remains and taken aboard the airplane to join the other 63 boxes of remains.
Cpl. Ty Austin Walker plays taps after the last box of 64 remains were loaded onto the plane. The official party is behind the plane as they escorted the last box of remains.
The remains were commingled with U.S. remains at the time of recovery. Twenty years later, with improvements in technology and advancements in forensic science methodologies, DPAA scientists were able to identify them as South Korean nationals.
Kun Hong Im (left) and Kim Young (from MAKR: Ministry of National Defense Agency for KIA (Killed In Action) Recovery and Identification, South Korea) salute as they stand in front of the South Korean remains the first time they walk aboard the aircraft before the ceremony begins. They would later accept the last of the remains and take the box of remains aboard the plane to conclude the ceremony.
Col. (Ret.) Charles McDaniel, Jr. was the keynote speaker. He and his brother Larry are the surviving sons of Master Sgt. Charles H. McDaniel, Sr. who was killed in combat in Nov. 1050 during the Korean War. Master Sgt. McDaniel's "dog tag" was recently returned by the North Koreans amongst 55 boxes of human remains. This is the Presentation of Colors to start the ceremony.