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Remains of U.S. Navy Serviceman, Killed at Pearl Harbor, Returns to IE

Signalman First Class Eugene Mitchell Skaggs
Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency
Signalman First Class Eugene Mitchell Skaggs

The remains of a U.S. Navy sailor, killed 80 years ago during the World War II attack on Pearl Harbor, is arriving in the Inland Empire Friday for preparation for burial at Riverside National Cemetery.

Signalman First Class Eugene Mitchell Skaggs of Ansted, West Virginia, died at age 33 when his ship, the U-S-S Oklahoma, came under attack on December 7th, 1941.

His remains were collected in 2015 as part of an effort to identify servicemen who went down with their ships in Pearl Harbor and were buried at the National Memorial Cemetery in Honolulu.

Pathologists identified Skaggs by using DNA from his living relatives.

The signalman was previously stationed at Long Beach, where he married his wife, Joanna Jameson Skaggs, in 1940. They had one child, Marie Elizabeth Skaggs, who is now 80 years old.

A procession from Ontario International Airport to Riverside National Cemetary will start at 3:45 pm Friday, according to the Orange County based organization, Honoring Our Fallen.

From the airport, the procession will travel down Haven Avenue southbound to the eastbound Pomona (60) Freeway, going through the 60/91/215 interchange in Riverside, then transitioning onto southbound Interstate 215.

The procession will use Exit 14, going west on Ethanac Road in Menifee, then turning south onto Murrieta Road, ending at the Miller-Jones Mortuary, 26770 Murrieta Road.