Remains of Marine killed at Battle of Tarawa to be buried at Arlington
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan — The remains of a Marine who went missing 72 years ago in World War II’s Battle of Tarawa will be buried will full military honors Tuesday at Arlington National Cemetery.
The remains of Marine Cpl. James D. Otto, 20, of Los Angeles, were recovered in June when History Flight, a private organization that works with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, discovered a burial trench containing what it believed to be the remains of 36 Marines, a Marine Corps statement said. Among those remains was posthumous Medal of Honor recipient 1st Lt. Alexander Bonnyman Jr.
Otto, assigned to Company L, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, was identified through dental comparisons and circumstantial and material evidence, the statement said. He was reported killed in action on the battle’s first day.
More than 1,000 Marines were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded in the Battle of Tarawa, which took place Nov. 20-23, 1943, on Betio, a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean’s Tarawa Atoll.