Missing WW2 soldier's remains identified, returned to North Carolina 77 years after his death

PARKTON, N.C. (WTVD) -- A soldier from North Carolina who went missing during World War II has officially been accounted for.

James E. Wright, of Parkton, North Carolina, died in September of 1944. He was part of George Patton's force fighting across France.

Wright's unit was ordered to cross the Moselle River near Dornot in early September. The unit held the line against a fierce German attack and took heavy losses for a couple days.

Wright was reported missing during that campaign. His body was unable to be recovered because of the fighting and German presence in the area.

After the war, the American Graves Registration Command (AGRC) searched the banks of the Moselle River until 1951. Wright's remains were never found-or so everybody thought.

In 2012, a private researcher suggested one of the unknown remains found by AGRC could belong to Wright.

The remains were disinterred in May 2016 and underwent several advanced technological procedures. On July 9, 2021, scientists confirmed that the remains belonged to Wright.

Wright will be buried Oct. 12 in Lumber Bridge, North Carolina.

His name, which is part of the Walls of the Missing at the Lorraine American Cemetery in St. Avold, France, will soon have a rosette placed next to it to indicate that he has been accounted for.
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