top of page

Wing On Hom

US Army
Euro-Mediterranean Theater
MIA Italy 79 Years

On April 6, 2023, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) identified the remains of Private Wing On Hom, age 20, missing from World War II for almost 80 years.

Wing had spent only a handful of years on American soil before he enlisted into the United States Army in March 1943--the same year the Chinese Exclusion Act was finally repealed.

Private Wing O. Hom served in Company B, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. On February 2, 1944, Private Hom was reported missing in action near the town of Cisterna di Latina, Italy (a town 45 miles south of Rome) where his unit was engaged in defensive fighting against the enemy. His remains were not immediately identified.

In September 1944, the 3044th Graves Registration Company recovered remains near the small hamlet of Ponte Rotto (approximately three miles west of Cisterna di Latina). The remains did not have identification tags or other means to suggest an identity. They were transferred to the Central Identification Point at Nettuno for processing. Due to the fragmentary condition of the remains, officials at Nettuno could only affirm the body belonged to an American soldier. In 1948, the remains were declared unidentifiable and permanently interred at what would be called the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery.

In September 2021, this set of unknown remains was disinterred and sent to the DPAA laboratory for analysis and identification. Using mitochondrial DNA testing, a team at the Offutt Air Force Base was able to match Private Hom to remains found in 1944 in Ponte Rotto. The laboratory analysis and the totality of the circumstantial evidence available established the remains as those of Private Hom.

Private Hom is memorialized on the Walls of the Missing at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery in Nettuno, Italy. His repatriated remains were buried near his parents in Brooklyn on October 11, 2023. He received a Purple Heart posthumously.

My beloved uncle was one of nearly 20,000 Chinese Americans who served their country in World War II. This represented close to a staggering 25% of their population in America – the highest percentage of service among any American ethnic community. Ours was the last minority community to be recognized for its service during World War II by receiving Congressional Gold Medals only in April 2020, that’s 75 years after the official end of WWII.

Sponsored by Kenneth Hom

bottom of page