I am a Heartland Community Leader and Co-Liaison. Visit my Community Center.
Name: Joel Corona
When a piece of styrofoam the group was using went into the water near a reef, PFC Corona started to retrieve it. He was not a good swimmer, and one of his friends warned him not to go after it. However, PFC Corona entered the water and was hit by a wave which pushed him out into the cove. He called for help, and several individuals attempted to rescue him without success. He went under water and was floating face down in the water.
A medical team arrived and attempted to recover his body, but were unsuccessful because of the turbulent condition of the water. PFC Corona's body was last seen about 125 yards from the mouth of the cove being washed out to sea. An extensive air, land and sea search was conducted without success.
Corona's is one of the unfortunate accidental deaths that occur wherever people are. The fact that he died an accidental death in the midst of war is tragically ironic. He is listed among the missing with honor, because his body was never found to be returned to the country he served.
Others who are missing do not have such clear cut cases. Some were known captives; some were photographed as they were led by their guards. Some were in radio contact with search teams, while others simply disappeared.
Since the war ended, over 250,000 interviews have been conducted with those who claim to know about Americans still alive in Southeast Asia, and several million documents have been studied. U.S. Government experts cannot seem to agree whether Americans are there alive or not. Distractors say it would be far too politically difficult to bring the men they believe to be alive home, and the U.S. is content to negotiate for remains.
Over 1000 eye-witness reports of living American prisoners were received by 1989. Most of them are still classified. If, as the U.S. seems to believe, the men are all dead, why the secrecy after so many years? If the men are alive, why are they not home?