Tarawa Deployment and
Cooperation with History Flight

After first talks between History Flight (US based charity) and the CRICC (Cranfield Recovery & Identification of Conflict Casualties) Team during the American Academy of Forensic Science Conference in Las Vegas in February 2016, the first actual cooperation is about to take place. A CRICC Team of eight archaeologists and anthropologists has been invited to work alongside History Flight on Tarawa, a small atoll in the Pacific Ocean. History Flight has been active on Tarawa for over ten years and has recovered many casualties, mostly US Marines.

The CRICC Team will work on the excavation and documentation of several mass graves, as well as the recovery of all casualties and their associated artifacts. All excavation and documentation work will take place according to the well-established protocols and SOPs of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA), who will also work on more detailed anthropological investigations and DNA analysis.

This first joint project between History Flight and CRICC is very much designed to pave the way for further, long-term collaboration in both Europe and overseas. CRICC has a network of trained, on-call Forensic Archaeology & Anthropology graduates, who are able to deploy to anything from one or two days to several weeks.

On Saturday 10/09/2016, six CRICC Team members will leave from London to rendezvous with their teammates from Canada and New Zealand on Fiji on 11/09 before flying to Tarawa on 12/09. There, they will work with History Flight experts for three weeks before returning home.

CRICC is very grateful to be invited to this deployment and hopes its contribution can significantly assist History Flight in its tireless efforts to recover and identify US Marines on Tarawa.


09/09/2016 - Cranfield Forensic Institute