Reference Information Paper 82
A Finding Aid to Records
Relating to Personal Participation in World War II: American Military Casualties and Burials
Table of Contents
Appendix: Casualty Statistics
The statistics given here are not intended to be definitive. There is always room for argument and refinement regarding categories that are subject to judgment and definition. A casualty might seem to be a clear-cut event, but that is not the case. An extreme example of this is the fact that in World War II the German military did not count as a casualty an individual who was wounded but returned to combat after successful treatment. American practice in that regard was different, but naturally some subtle differences in reporting among units and especially among services are found. Categories of casualties, such as missing, missing in action, and declared dead, obviously add another element of uncertainty to some figures. That is not to say that an immense and well-intentioned effort did not go into casualty accounting and reporting by the American military. The sources of the figures given here are good. Figures from other good sources may differ in some respects.
The point of the figures below is to give the reader some sense of the scope and size of the job of handling, accounting for, and reporting casualties among American forces in World War II. Yearly and theater figures are included where possible to give some idea of the tasks in geographic and temporal terms. Although theater figures are not given for Navy and Marine Corps casualties, it may be assumed that the vast majority of those are from the war in the Pacific and Asian areas.
U.S. Army Casualties 14Army Casualties by Category
Army Casualties (Wounded and Dead) by Year
|Year||Air Corps Branch||All Other Branches||Total|
Army casualties (Wounded and Dead) by Theater
|.||Battle Deaths||Wounded in Action 15||Captured/ Interned||Missing in Action 16|
|All Other Theaters||8,458||4,329||2,673||834|
U.S. Navy and Marine Corps Casualties 18
Total U.S. Navy and Marine Corps Casualties, World War II
|.||Number Serving||Wounds/ Not Mortal||Battle Deaths||Total Casualties|
Note: Compiled by Benjamin L. DeWhitt. Published by the National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC, 1993.
Web version prepared 1999. Additions and changes incorporated in the Web version are between brackets  and in italics.