Finn Buer – Sergeant, United States Army Air Force

Finn Buer
Sergeant, U.S. Army Air Forces
68th Airways and Communications Service Group
Entered the Service from: New York
Died: September 8, 1945
Missing in Action or Buried at Sea
Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery
Manila, Philippines

21 June 2003:

The war in the Pacific had just ended, when First Lieutenant Philip Miller set out from Australia on September 8, 1945 in his Army Airways Communications System B-25 en route to what is now Biak, Indonesia.

Staff Sergeant Finn Buer , a passenger on the plane, had written to his family only two days before. He told his folks to get ready to have a big party when he returned. Finn would never make it home.

A helicopter pilot working for the Freeport Mining Corp. noticed aircraft wreckage on a mountaintop in Indonesia on February 5, 1996. The company notified the military attache at the American Embassy in the Indonesian capitol of Jakarta.

A CILHI team recovered remains in 1999 from the site and the soldiers were identified in 2002 as crewmembers Sergeant Mathew Neary and Staff Sergeant Troy Hewett, Jr. and passengers; First Lieutenant Fred Smith, Staff Sergeants Veachel Straney, Charles Boslers and Earl Spredemann.

There were two caskets for the World War II men. Buer was buried in a separate casket next to his comrades.

The attendees for the second funeral were a mix of older siblings and widow, mixed with younger descendants two or three generations removed from the Pacific Theater of World War II.

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