Remains of pilot killed in WWII mishap to be returned to family for funeral

Navy Reserve Ensign Harold P. DeMoss, 21, of Nashville, Tennessee, accounted for on May 9, will be buried September 15. In the early morning hours of June 23, 1945, DeMoss was a member of Fighting Squadron 100, piloting an F6F-3 Hellcat like this one from Naval Air Station Barbers Point, Oahu, Territory of Hawaii.

Military officials say they’ve accounted for the remains of a Tennessee World War II pilot killed at 21 years old.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency says remains of Navy Reserve Ensign Harold P. DeMoss were accounted for in May and identified through “material and circumstantial evidence” after excavating his Hawaii crash site in 2016.

Officials say DeMoss flew with Fighting Squadron 100 from Naval Air Station Barbers Point for training alongside two aircraft early one morning in 1945. He descended through clouds and went missing. Pilots later spotted burning wreckage.

Unidentifiable remains were later found and his plane’s wreckage was identified. His remains were declared unrecoverable four years later.

DeMoss' remains will be returned to family and buried Sept. 15 with full military honors in his hometown of Nashville.

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