Johnson City, New York
Corporal, U.S. Army
Service Number 12114532
Missing in Action – Presumed Dead
Died November 30, 1950 in Korea
Corporal Lucas was a member of the Heavy Mortar Company, 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. He was listed as Missing in Action while fighting the enemy in North Korea on November 30, 1950. He was presumed dead on December 31, 1953. Corporal Lucas was awarded the Purple Heart, the Combat Infantryman's Badge, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and the Korean War Service Medal.
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)
IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. 575-08
July 09, 2008
Soldier Missing In Action From Korean War Is Identified
The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
He is Corporal Steven Lucas, U.S. Army, of Johnson City, New York. He will be buried July 11, 2008, in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C.
Representatives from the Army met with Lucas’ next-of-kin to explain the recovery and identification process, and to coordinate interment with military honors on behalf of the Secretary of the Army.
In late November 1950, Lucas was assigned to the Heavy Mortar Company, 31st Infantry Regiment making up part of the 31st Regimental Combat Team (RCT), then engaging enemy forces east of the Chosin Reservoir near Kaljon-ri, South Hamgyong Province, North Korea. On November 29, 1950, remnants of the RCT began a fighting withdrawal to more defensible positions near Hagaru-ri, south of the reservoir. Lucas never made it to the lines at Hagaru-ri and was last seen on November 30, 1950.
Between 1991-94, North Korea turned over to the U.S. 208 boxes of remains believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. servicemen. North Korean documents turned over with one of several boxes in 1993 indicated that the remains from that box were exhumed near Kaljon-ri. This location correlates with Lucas’ last known location.
Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA and dental comparisons in the identification of Lucas’ remains.
For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1169.
Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard