The Defense Department has identified the remains of Air Force Maj. John L. Carroll, a forward air controller who was killed by enemy forces after his O-1G Bird Dog aircraft was hit and forced to land. The Decatur, Ga., airman told search and rescue forces he would stay with his aircraft, but the first rescue failed because of intense enemy fire. On a second pass, rescuers could see that Carroll was dead and could not land to retrieve his body. An investigation of the site in 1993 provided aircraft wreckage. Interviews from 1996 through 2007 of witnesses turned up identification, some personal effects, and directions to a burial site.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.