WI Airman killed in WWII plane crash to be laid to rest in Columbus

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COLUMBUS, Wis. (WMTV)-- A World War II airman will be laid to rest on Sunday in Columbus after his remains were identified decades after his death.

According to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA), Army Air Forces Pfc. Joseph I. Natvik, 20, of Madison was a member of the 1330 Army Air Force Base Unit, Air Transport Command. He was the engineer on board a C-109 carrying supplies from India to China when the airplane crashed. All four crew members were declared deceased.

In 2007, an independent investigator found the aircraft in a deep ravine. Possible remains were found and turned over to the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command.

To identify Natvik's remains, scientists and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used DNA analysis. Natvik was accounted for September 24, 2018.

Natvik will be buried on November 25 in Columbus with full military honors.

Gov. Scott Walker ordered flags to half-staff on Sunday.

“Pfc. Joseph Natvik sacrificed his life to help save others during World War II,” said Governor Walker. “He is an American hero who’s sacrifice we can never repay. It is an honor to see him finally return home with the honors he deserves.”