Remains of Over 200 Servicemembers Sent to Va. Landfill: Report

Landfill disposal not approved military practice

Thursday, Dec 8, 2011  |  Updated 11:34 AM EDT
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Remains of Hundreds Sent to Va. Landfill

AP

A Marine carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of a fallen U.S. service member at Dover Air Force Base.

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The remains of many more troops have been dumped in a Virginia landfill than the military originally acknowledged, according to a new report.

The Washington Post is reporting the incinerated partial remains of at least 274 U.S. service members that arrived at Dover Air Base in Delaware were sent to the King George County Landfill.  The report was based on database information at the Dover Air Base mortuary, where the remains of most war dead return.

From the Post:

The landfill disposals were never formally authorized under military policies or regulations. They also were not disclosed to senior Pentagon officials who conducted a high-level review of cremation policies at the Dover mortuary in 2008, records show.

The families of the fallen soldiers had authorized the military to dispose of the remains respectfully.  They were apparently unaware of the landfill dumping.

The mortuary has handled the remains of more than 6,300 troops since 2001.

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