Still Trying to Bring Their Fallen Heroes Home

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More than six decades after the end of World War II, the families of men like Joe Huba are making a new push to find and bring home the remains of their missing and dead. After years when survivors accepted the solace of mass memorials and unknown-soldier graves, a younger generation is seeking something much more personal.

The relatives are spurred by strides in DNA matching, satellite mapping and Internet archives, and by a new advocacy group impatient with the pace of the military unit that tracks down remains.

“We owe these men for giving their lives — we can’t just leave them in jungles, on mountainsides,” said Lisa Phillips, 45, president of the group, World War II Families for the Return of the Missing, which was formed in 2006 to compete with organizations pressing for recoveries from the conflicts in Vietnam and Korea. “There’s that saying, ‘No one left behind,’ and we’ve left a generation behind.”

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