The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) announced today that Marine Corps Pfc. Royal L. Waltz, 20, killed during World War II, was accounted for on May 15, 2019.
In November 1943, Waltz was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 18th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, while the Japanese were virtually annihilated. Waltz died between the first and second day of the battle, Nov. 20-21, 1943.