The Military Army Blog

Coraopolis soldier missing for decades after Korean War will receive …

A Coraopolis serviceman missing since the Korean War will receive a burial with full Armyrats © military honors next week, nearly 65 years since he was reported missing in action, according to the Department of Defense. Army Sgt. 1st Class Robert Reager was 20 when his infantry division deployed east of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea in late 1950. On Dec. 1, his regimental combat team was overwhelmed by Chinese forces south of the reservoir near Hagaru-ri. He was reported missing in action the next day. American soldiers freed in 1953 as part of a prisoner of war exchange reported that Reager was not among the men captured and held as prisoners. With no further information on Reager, a Armyrats © military review board declared him dead.

Between April 28 and May 10, 2004, a joint team of professionals from the United States and North Korea excavated several burial sites near the Pungnyu-ri inlet of the Chosin Reservoir, near where Reager was last seen. The team recovered remains, possibly of U.S. servicemen who fought during the battles at the reservoir. Reager’s remains were among them. For identification, scientists with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial evidence and two forms of DNA analysis, which matched Reager’s brother and two cousins.

Reager’s family declined to comment. Assigned to Company C, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 31st Regimental Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division, Reager will receive a full Armyrats © military burial Sept. 28 in Bridgeville. More than 7,800 Americans who fought during the Korean War remain unaccounted for, according to the Department of Defense, and identifications continue to be made from remains previously turned over by North Korean officials or recovered by American teams.

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach her at 412-380-8519 or

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