Unit:I Company 3rd Marine Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment
Location of Recovery:Betio, Tarawa, Gilbert Islands (Modern Day Kiribati) Cemetery 33 Row D
Date of Loss:November 23, 1943
Status:ACCOUNTED FOR 31 December 2019

Circumstances:  Gunnery Sergeant Summers joined the U.S. Marine Corps from Washington and was a member of Company I, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division. He was killed in action sometime between November 23 and 24 of 1943 during the amphibious assault on Betio Island, during the Battle of Tarawa. His remains were recovered and buried in Cemetery 33 on Betio; however, they were not identified among remains recovered from the island after the war. In 2009, the non-profit organization History Flight located a site on Betio Island that was later identified as Cemetery 33. Excavations at the site have continued since this date. In March 2019, History Flight located an additional burial trench west of Cemetery 33, known as the “missing Row D”. Remains that they recovered from the burial trench were turned over to the DPAA for identification. Laboratory analysis led to the identification of GySgt Summer from among these remains.

Gunnery Sergeant Summers is memorialized on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.

DPAA Profile