Stars and Stripes stripes.com 14 Jan, 2021 03:15 am

In DOD reversal, agency will analyze remains thought to be WWII’s first Medal of Honor recipient

In DOD reversal, agency will analyze remains thought to be WWII’s first Medal of Honor recipient
The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency and its precursors had denied repeated requests by the family of Alexander “Sandy” Nininger Jr. to exhume remains in a Philippines grave for DNA testing, maintaining the agency’s documentation could not validate taking that step.

In DOD reversal, agency will analyze remains thought to be WWII’s first Medal of Honor recipient In a reversal of policy long sought by family members, the Defense Department has ordered a set of remains in the Philippines believed to be Alexander "Sandy" Nininger to be exhumed and examined.ARMY The Defense Department on Wednesday agreed to analyze remains in a Philippines grave long believed by family members to be those of Alexander “Sandy” Nininger Jr.“I have directed DPAA to immediately generate the necessary exception to policy in order to expeditiously execute scientific analysis of the remains to confirm or deny identification,” Anthony Tata, currently performing the duties of undersecretary of defense for policy, said in an email Wednesday sent to Defense Department officials and John Patterson, who is Nininger’s nephew and closest next of kin.The exception to policy comes a day after Patterson sent a letter to Defense Department officials on behalf of the family requesting that the soldier’s name be removed from all federal installations, plaques and other sites.

, the first service member awarded the Medal of Honor during World War II.He became the first service member to receive the Medal of Honor during World War II.

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