Tags: Harold DeMoss | brother | Jim DeMoss | WWII

Brother of Man Killed in WWII Fighting to Have Remains Buried With Family

Brother of Man Killed in WWII Fighting to Have Remains Buried With Family
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By    |   Sunday, 16 August 2015 08:31 PM

Jim DeMoss is still fighting the federal government to have the remains of his brother, who died during World War II, buried with his family in Tennessee.

The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville reported on DeMoss' efforts to bring home his brother Harold DeMoss.

Harold DeMoss was piloting an F6F-3 aircraft during nighttime training mission at 1 a.m. June 23, 1945 when he lost control of the aircraft and crashed in a remote region. He was buried at the crash site three days later, and decades of efforts by DeMoss' long-deceased parents, and now his brother and neice, have failed.

Harold DeMoss' body lies on American soil only 40 miles from the Defense Department agency in charge of bringing home the remains of soldiers declared missing in action.

DeMoss' brother understands that initially the military's focus was on the atomic bombs that soon would be dropped on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, bringing an end to the war. But as early as 1949, the Navy declared the remains unrecoverable because the area was overgrown.

His mother, Judy DeMoss, also received a letter in 1968 saying the remains could not be recovered and discouraged her from going to Hawaii to look for them. She traveled there anyway, though she was unable to get to the crash site.

A Defense Department spokesman insisted to The Tennessean that the recovery of DeMoss remains is a high priority.

"The Department of Defense is planning activities surrounding a recovery of Ensign DeMoss' crash site are still progressing," said Army Lt. Col. Joe Sowers said. "We are working to ensure compliance with federal environmental laws with recovery efforts. This case has a high standing for recovery, and we will continue to work diligently to move things forward."

That's little comfort for Jim DeMoss, who has all but given up on ever getting his brother buried in the family cemetery.

"They just don't have time to fool with some hillbilly who got killed 70 years ago," he said. "It's like, 'Here, take my child' and then they give us nothing in return. My mother never did get over it."

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Jim DeMoss is still fighting the federal government to have the remains of his brother, who died during World War II, buried with his family in Tennessee.
Harold DeMoss, brother, Jim DeMoss, WWII
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2015-31-16
Sunday, 16 August 2015 08:31 PM
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