HEADQUARTERS MARINE CORPS,Washington, D.C. -- Gen. James Jones, Commandant of the Marine Corps, received a plaque from J. Alan Liotta, Director of the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office, April 27th in a small ceremony at the Pentagon. Mr. Liotta presented the plaque, containing sand and water from the Chosin Reservoir, in honor of the return to the Chosin Reservoir by Americans. "We wanted to give it to the Commandant because he is a representative of the Marines," said Mr. Liotta.
The DPMO is excavating the Chosin Reservoir area for the first time and hope to recover some of the 199 Marines still unaccounted for after the Korean War. "There is nothing more important to our armed services, and to our nation, than bringing closure to this and to the families," said Gen. Jones at the ceremony.
Ten excavation operations are scheduled around the Chosin reservoir area over the next year. The DPMO will be working with the Korean Peoples Army in a joint effort to recover missing service members. "It is an inspiring and daunting task ahead of us, because you realize it is a lot of work," said Mr. Liotta referring to the excavation efforts. "You're proud to represent the Marine Corps and the other services. You're proud to bring answers to the families of the missing and bring them closure. It gives you a real sense of satisfaction."