Another Four Are Home

| August 19, 2018

DPAA has identified and accounted for the following formerly-missing US personnel.

From World War II

PFC Morris R. Worrell, US Army, assigned to F Company, 2nd Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment, was lost in the Philippines on 27 September 1942. He was accounted for on 16 August 2018.

ACOM Otis E. Ingram, US Navy, assigned to Torpedo Squadron Fifty One (VT-51), was lost in the Republic of Palau on 27 July 1944. He was accounted for on 8 August 2018.

From Korea

PFC Mathis O. Ball, Jr., US Army, assigned M Company, 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division, was lost in South Korea on 12 July 1950. He was accounted for on 15 August 2018. (See note.)

PFC George L. Spangenberg, US Army, assigned to E Company, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, was lost in South Korea on 15 November 1950. He was accounted for on 7 August 2018.

From Southeast Asia


Welcome back, elder brothers-in-arms. Our apologies that your return took so long.

Rest easy. You’re home now.

. . .

Over 72,000 US personnel remain unaccounted for from World War II; over 7,600 US personnel remain unaccounted for from the Korean War; over 1,500 remain unaccounted for in Southeast Asia (SEA); 126 remain unaccounted for from the Cold War; 5 remain unaccounted for from the Gulf Wars; and 1 individual remains unaccounted for from Operation Eldorado Canyon. Comparison of DNA from recovered remains against DNA from some (but not all) blood relatives can assist in making a positive ID for unidentified remains that have already been recovered, or which may be recovered in the future.

On their web site’s “Contact Us” page, DPAA now has FAQs. The answer to one of those FAQs describes who can and cannot submit DNA samples useful in identifying recovered remains. The chart giving the answer can be viewed here. The text associated with the chart is short and can be viewed in DPAA’s FAQs.

If your family lost someone in one of these conflicts and you qualify to submit a DNA sample, please arrange to submit one. By doing that you just might help identify the remains of a US service member who’s been repatriated but not yet been identified – as well as a relative of yours, however distant. Or you may help to identify remains to be recovered in the future.

Everybody deserves a proper burial. That’s especially true for those who gave their all while serving this nation.


Author’s Note: DPAA’s “Recently Accounted For” page lists an incorrect country of loss for PFC Ball. PFC Ball’s unit, the 24th Infantry Division, was not in North Korea in July of 1950; they were in South Korea. The correct country of loss (South Korea) is used above.

Category: No Longer Missing

Comments (19)

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  1. Roh-Dog says:

    Rest easy, Gentlemen.
    Bore Brother Bore.

  2. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Morris Raymond Worrell was the seventh of nine children born to Emery and Marie Worrell, as of the 1930 census. He was born in 1922 and, when he was of age, joined the Army, leaving the family’s home in Beemer, Cuming county, Nebraska far behind. In early 1942, weeks after Pearl Harbor, Morris was in the Philippines when the Japanese attacked. His unit, F Co, 2nd Battalion, 31st Infantry was engaged in the chaotic fighting and rapid movements that affected all American units on Bataan. Contrary to many mistaken beliefs, there was much fight in the troops and they took the fight to the Japanese where they could, ultimately succumbing to a great many factors that have been studied and written about since Bataan fell. Morris survived F Company’s numerous engagements and was one of thousands of men taken prisoner, not by personal choice. Like far too many of those poor bastards, mercy came to those who were lost in battle. Others, including Nebraskan Morris Raymond Worrell, suffered long and terribly before they perished in a Japanese camp.

    • 26Limabeans says:

      TNX for the background info on Morris.
      Bataan is such a horrible part of history and needs to have light shined on it.

      • NHSparky says:

        Good luck getting the Japanese to ever atone for their actions.

        Try having a conversation with an average Japanese person under 50 about the atrocities committed during WWII. They almost universally believe thus is western propaganda. They’ve simply never been taught about it in their schools.

        • 2/17 Air Cav says:

          Atone? There is a Japanese organization (The Global Alliance for Historical Truth) that filed suit against a city in CA to have it remove a memorial to Japan’s “comfort women.” The suit failed but that’s not the point. Mitsubishi did apologize after many years of denying that it used American servicemen as slaves in its mines. I knew one of those men and he refused to ride in a Japanese-made car or watch a Japanese TV. I never had the heart to tell him that the TV he did watch, despite its name, was made in Japan.

          And then there’s the Japanese in China and in Korea. To me, a people that would act as Japan did in the 1930s and 40s–until it was stopped by two bombs–will do it again, if given the chance. I mean that. Americans can’t seem to get that there are evil people that populate countries and not just evil regimes controlling them.

  3. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Otis E. Ingram was a gunner on an Avenger when the aircraft went down on a mission launched from the USS San Jacinto. If that ship and aircraft sound familiar in conjunction with another, there is no reason to wonder why. It was George Bush’s VT-51 squadron and assigned ship. (Bush would go down himself not two months after Ingram’s loss.) Ingram and the radioman, Mintus, died in the crash. The pilot survived but was immediately executed.

    Otis is listed in the 1940 census as an unmarried seaman living in the EM Barracks at the US Naval Air Station in Escambia, Florida. His age was recorded as 23 and his home of record was listed as Little Rock, Arkansas. It appears that sometime after the 1940 census, he married, but I cannot confirm this. Here’s more on the flight and the finding of the wreckage of the crash and of the remains.

    • AW1Ed says:

      The pilot survived but was immediately executed.

      Having read Flyboys: A True Story of Courage by James Bradley, and the unspeakable atrocities committed by the Japanese (to include cannibalism) this was a merciful fate for the pilot.

      • 2/17 Air Cav says:

        Yes, I agree. I know exactly what you’re talking about–yet we are told that we are all the same, that people are just people with the same this and the same that. Bullshit.

  4. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    I had no success searching for background on George Spangenberg. However, the Korean War Project found some info and posted it. I could corroborate none of the info, which appears to have come from 1930 and 1940 census records.

  5. Sparks says:

    Welcome home brothers. Rest in peace in your home soil now.

  6. Joe Williams says:

    Hondo and those that might be interested. Two essays in Military about DPAA. First oneis titled “Bones of My Grandfather”. Scroll down to second article after reading the first article. Makes me mad if true. Explains why no recoveries the S.E.A.! Joe

    • 2/17 Air Cav says:

      Joe. There is no IF about the lost graves of Tarawa, their being found by a private organization many times cited by Jonn–History Flight–or the horrible history of DPAA before it was overhauled several years ago.

  7. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Mathis O. Ball is reported by some sources to have hailed from Denton, Texas. However,that may have been his place of enlistment and I can find no other associations of that name with Texas, including census records. 500 miles from Denton is Leflore, Mississippi and that is the only place for which a Mathis Ball, aged four, is listed in the 1930 census. I cannot say it is he, but I will say that he was Black and the Mathis Ball listed by DPAA was one of the few virtually all-Black units remaining during the Korean war. The unit was disbanded and its history remains argumentative today. However, the basis for that was established AFTER Mathis O. Ball’s loss date.

  8. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    To each of these warriors, welcome home.

  9. NHSparky says:

    Rest easy, brothers.

  10. UpNorth says:

    Rest in peace, men. Welcome home.

  11. Hondo says:

    Joe, periodically there are recoveries from SEA. But the numbers remaining of those missing from World War II, Korea, and SEA guarantees that recoveries from SEA will be far rarer than those from World War II and Korea. For every individual still missing from SEA, there are nearly 5 missing from Korea – and somewhere around 46 still missing from World War II.

    Plus, SEA is tropical – and Korea and many theaters in World War II were not. Lowland jungle and jungle-covered mountains are difficult environments in which to locate and recover remains.

    Bottom line: we’ll never recover them all, and yes – DPAA has some issues. But they still make the attempt recover and ID those missing, and IMO do a surprisingly good job given the timelines involved and the difficulty of the task.

  12. RGR 4-78 says:

    Welcome Home.

  13. 5th/77thFA says:

    Welcome Home Troops. And we chip away at the numbers. Hondo, again, thanks for this post every week, and thanks also to 2/17AC for the added info. This segment and the Stolen Valor is what first brought me here. We have kin in Pender NE that know some of the Worrel Family over in Beemer. I think this fellow may be listed at the very nice Veterans Memorial Park that is in Pender. These NE towns are very small, but the AL & DAV/VFW Posts are strong, active, and not eat up with posing POSes. I’m going to try to forward this post to BnL and see if he knows of any more info. Keep up the good work. Also had a very good friend that passed about 10 years back that was a Bataan/ Death March Survivor. He too, would not have any Japanese product in his home.