John W. Ruark

NAME
John Wesley Ruark
NICKNAME
MCSN
278681
HOME OF RECORD
148 8th Street, Silvis, IL
NEXT OF KIN
Parents, Emile & Rose Ruark
DATE OF BIRTH
January 3, 1921
DATE OF ENLISTMENT
December 11, 1939
DATE OF LOSS
November 19, 1942
REGION
Philippines
CAMPAIGN / AREA
Cabanatuan
CASUALTY TYPE
Died as POW
UNIT
M/3/4th Marines
DUTY
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
Corporal John W. Ruark was captured in the fall of Corregidor and interned at one of the Cabanatuan prison camps located on the island of Luzon, Philippines. He was reported as a prisoner in March of 1943; a few months later, word was received that he died of malaria on 9 July 1943.

When the Cabanatuan cemetery was exhumed after the war, a mass burial was discovered in Plot 7, Grave 717. The remains of fifteen individuals were found; one was identified by dog tags, and three others by forensic analysis in the late 1940s. The other eleven remains – including those believed to be Corporal Ruark – were buried as unknowns in the Manila American Cemetery.

INDIVIDUAL DECORATIONS
Prisoner of War Medal
LAST KNOWN RANK
Corporal
STATUS OF REMAINS
Recovered; individual identification denied.
Reburied as unknown, Manila American Cemetery.
MEMORIALS
Rock Island National Cemetery
Manila American Cemetery

In January 2018, the DPAA announced the identification of PFC Lloyd Lobdell and T4 John Kovach from Grave 717. Nine others, including Cpl. Ruark, await identification.

For more information on Cabanatuan Grave 717, see John Eakin’s BataanMissing.com

 

Biography:
Coming soon. Contact the webmaster for information on this Marine.


Articles and Records:

POW/Missing Persons Detachment, HQMC, July 1943. This date of death would later change with the discovery of the mass grave.

 

The saga of Corporal Ruark played out in the pages of the Dispatch (Moline, IL) and the Daily Times (Davenport, Iowa).


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