Military to disinter hundreds of unaccounted-for Pearl Harbor dead to identify them

The Pentagon says it will disinter and try to identify the remains of up to 388 unaccounted-for sailors and Marines killed when the USS Oklahoma sank in the 1941 Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor.

The military said Tuesday that the remains will be exhumed later this year from a national cemetery in Honolulu.

Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency spokeswoman Lt. Col. Melinda Morgan says officials plan to begin the disinterment in three to six weeks. Many remains were comingled when buried, so the agency will be removing 61 caskets from 45 grave sites.

Morgan says the agency aims to identify the remains within five years.

She says advances in forensic science and technology as well as genealogical help from family members are making it possible to identify more remains than before.