Remains of World War II soldier from New Jersey identified

WASHINGTON -- Authorities have identified the remains of a World War II soldier from New Jersey who was killed in Germany and buried in Belgium.

Scientists used dental and anthropological analysis, as well as DNA, to determine the remains were Army Sgt. Larry Wassil of Bloomfield, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency said on Monday.

Wassil, 33, was leading a three-man reconnaissance team scouting enemy positions during the Hürtgen Forest offensive, near Hürtgen, Germany, on Dec. 28, 1944, when they took enemy machine gun fire and scattered, officials said.

Two of the men found each other, but Wassil was missing and presumed dead.

An agency historian determined remains originally discovered by German wood cutters and recovered in 1952, possibly were Wassil, the agency said. They were disinterred from the Ardennes American Cemetery in 2019 and sent for examination and identification.

Wassil will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

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