Remains of three U.S. divers missing in Greece identified


ATHENS, Greece (AP) – The remains of three American divers missing since 1978 while exploring underwater caves have been identified by DNA tests, the U.S. Embassy said Friday.

One of the three, U.S. Air Force Sgt. Donald Michaud, will be buried Friday with full military honors in Maine, a statement said.

The remains of Michaud, along with Airman Jan Granroth and her brother Mark Granroth, were identified after extensive DNA analysis by the Department of Defense Armed Forces Medical Examiner.

Donald Michaud had been stationed at a U.S. military base near Athens when he disappeared, along with two other divers, while exploring undersea caves in Vouliagmeni Lake near Athens on Sept. 9, 1978.

The lake, a rock-encrusted basin of thermal-heated, brackish water near the coast south of Athens, is known for its dangerous maze of underwater caves and unpredictable currents.

Michaud is to be buried at St. Joseph’s cemetery in Biddeford, Maine.

Michaud, who was 32, was survived by his wife, Rosemary, and their three children Yuni, Robert and Katherine.

Funerals for the other two divers will be held August 4 in Sebeka, Minnesota, also with full military honors, the embassy said.

The divers’ remains were recovered last year by Greek volunteer divers who had been searching for a missing Greek photographer, who disappeared in Vouliagmeni Lake in 1990.

After failing to match the remains to the missing photographer, Greek authorities turned them over to the U.S. military, which used a DNA analysis for the identification.

Michaud’s remains, which include several bone fragments, were to be buried with the recovered scuba gear, said Robert Michaud of Lewiston, who still has the diving log that was taken from his father’s locked car near Athens.