Remains of fallen Virginia soldier from World War II recovered

Army Staff Sgt. Raymond Blanton
Army Staff Sgt. Raymond Blanton(Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency)
Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 9:23 AM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ/DPAA Release) - An Army staff sergeant from Richmond, killed during World War II, has been accounted for.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) has announced Army Staff Sgt. Raymond C. Blanton, 19, of Richmond, was accounted for in April 2020.

In October 1944, Blanton was assigned to Company C, 1st Battalion, 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division. His unit was engaged in battle with German forces near Germeter, Germany, in the Hürtgen Forest, when he was killed in action Oct. 14. Blanton could not be recovered because of the ongoing fighting, according to DPAA.

Following the end of the war, the American Graves Registration Command investigated and recovered missing American personnel in Europe, but were unable to recover or identify Blanton’s remains. He was declared non-recoverable in 1951.

A DPAA historian determined a set of remains buried in Ardennes American Cemetery in 1950 might be Blanton’s, with the body disinterred in 2017 and sent to a DPAA laboratory for identification.

Scientists from DPAA used dental and anthropological analysis, as well as circumstantial evidence, to identify the remains.

Blanton’s name is recorded on the Walls of the Missing at Netherlands American Cemetery, an American Battle Monuments Commission site in Margarten, Netherlands, along with the others still missing from World War II. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for, according to DPAA.

Blanton will be buried July 1, 2021 in Richmond.

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