NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — The remains of a Tennessee soldier who was killed during World War II have been identified.
Marine Corps Reserve Cpl. William R. Ragsdale of Nashville was a member of Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, which was part of the invasion force of the island of Saipan.
In June 1944, Ragsdale was initially reported as wounded in action and evacuated from Saipan, but when he was unable to be found during the chaos surrounding the battle and its aftermath, his status was changed to missing in action and then deceased.
After the war, officials searched for and disinterred remains on Saipan but could not identify any as Ragsdale.
In January 2020, remains designated as Unknown X-6 27th Infantry Division Cemetery were disinterred and sent to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency lab at Pearl Habor. Using dental, anthropological and mitochondrial DNA analysis, along with circumstantial and material evidence, the remains were identified as Ragsdale and he was determined accounted for in April.
He will be buried on Aug. 6 in his hometown.