The remains of a soldier killed in World War II will be buried in San Diego, California, decades after his death, according to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

Scientists positively identified Army Tech Sgt. Matthew L. McKeon’s remains on Jan. 12, 2023, according to a March 16 release from the agency.

McKeon was assigned to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division in November 1944. He was reported killed in action when his unit was fighting German forces near Hürtgen, Germany, in the Hürtgen Forest. At the time, his remains were not recovered.

The American Graves Registration Command, tasked with investigating and recovering missing American service members in Europe, was unable to identify McKeon’s remains, despite several investigations in the Hürtgen area for several years after the war’s end.

An historian determined that a set of unidentified remains which had been recovered near Hürtgen and buried at Ardennes American Cemetery in 1950 could belong to a service member missing from combat in November 1944. The remains were disinterred in June 2021 and sent to the DPAA laboratory at Offutt Air Force Base. Scientists identified McKeon’s remains using dental and anthropological analysis, as well as DNA analysis.

A rosette will be placed by McKeon’s name on the Walls of the Missing at Netherlands American Cemetery.

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