31 March 2010 — Star Valley, AZ
- Marital Status: Married 1
Vietnam War 1
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16 April 2010 — Monticello, IN
The latest MIA update from Dean's family: Dean's brother, Jack, went to the National Family Update for MIA's in June 2009 and found that the excavation team is getting closer to Dean's crash site. It's in the Sekong Province in Laos. So much depends on weather, but they're at a site right next to his. The US is at the mercy of the Laotian government. The team can only work 30 days at a time, and excavations had to be from north to south, Sekong is the next to the last in the south. So it should be soon, and they should know more in the next year. ~ Rest In Peace, Brother, Until You Are Found ~ You Are Not Forgotten ~
March 30, 2015 — Monticello, Indiana
The latest update from Dean's brother, Jack and his sister Kay, on March 22, 2015. The JPAC Recovery Teams, after getting access in 2010, have searched the crash site four out of five of the last years and have finished their excavation and closed their operations for this crash site, finishing up in the late summer of 2014. The Laotian government was not very cooperative in letting the recovery team in to do their work. Still being a Communist country, Laos does not trust the American government and would only agree to let helicopters from New Zealand to have access to the crash site in order to take in the American Recovery Teams. They would only allow them access for 30 days at a time for each year: 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014. In 2012, they were unable to access the site because of the lack of funding due to budget cuts.
The JPAC team found pieces of the plane to verify that this was the crash site for Dean’s plane of which he was a crew member. They found pieces of landing gear, engines, propeller, fuselage and various other parts of the plane. They found larger pieces of the fuselage in a nearby village which had been scavenged by the villagers which used them for building materials. The village was about a half hour walk from the crash site. The villagers were interviewed to find whatever they could about the crash or crash site, but it had been nearly 50 years since the incident, so not much information was gathered from the elder villagers.
They have found enough information on five out of the six of the crew members to verify their identity. Dean is the only one that they have not found anything for verification. They found a helmet with part of the pilot/co-pilots name on it and a billfold with enough ID information to identify one of the crew members. They found dog tags and dog tag pieces to identify two others, there were several pieces of watches and watch bands, also a cigarette lighter. There were also some bone fragments and they have a tooth that even with today's technology, they aren’t able to get enough DNA to identify who it belonged to. They say that with future improved technology, they might be able to verify it some day. They also found a piece of a particle denture that they used to identify one member of the crew. The soil at the crash site was so acidic, that it severely compromised artifacts from being preserved for all these years. They only brought out articles of importance that could identify personnel. Aircraft parts and pieces were left at the site, stating that there was no purpose of bringing them out.
So, the family of Dean Devall still does not have the final closure that they have hoped for, but do realize that there is very little hope of finding out anything more to give them the closure that they so deserve, after having sought and searched for it all these years. God bless them, and thank you, Dean, for your service and the sacrifice you made for your country.
Rest In Peace ~ You Are Not Forgotten
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