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Remains of Burbank Marine killed at Pearl Harbor in 1941 are identified

Pfc. Walter L. Collier on Dec. 4, 1939.
Pfc. Walter L. Collier, seen in a Dec. 4, 1939, photo, was killed Dec. 7, 1941, in the attack on Pearl Harbor. His remains were recently identified and will be buried in Hawaii.
(Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency)

The remains of a Marine from Burbank who was killed in the Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor have been identified and will be buried in Hawaii, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced.

Pfc. Walter L. Collier of Burbank was identified on May 25, but his family only recently received a full briefing, the agency said in a statement this week.

Collier was assigned to the battleship Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island when Japanese aircraft attacked. Multiple torpedo hits quickly caused the warship to capsize.

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The remains of 19-year-old John Franklin Middleswart were the 300th identified from the wreck of the USS Oklahoma

Collier was among 429 crewmen killed, but his remains were among many that could not be identified for decades. Another California serviceman, 39-year-old Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Charles E. Hudson of Stockton, was identified earlier this year.

A reexamination of the unidentified remains from the Oklahoma began in 2015. Collier was identified through anthropological and mitochondrial DNA analysis, the agency said.

Collier will be buried Dec. 8 at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.


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