UPDATE: Due to the government shutdown, WUSA9 reporter Mike Valerio, who was en route to the site of the Battle of Tarawa, is now unable to complete his journey until the end of the shutdown. We'll be providing updates as this story develops.

ORIGINAL STORY: More than 7,000 miles from Arlington National Cemetery lie the bodies of sailors and marines who lost their lives in World War II during the Battle of Tarawa.

Their final resting place is anything but idilic -- surrounds by trash and pigpens, they are buried under pavement.

WUSA9 Reporter Mike Valerio investigates how they ended up there and efforts by private Americans to bring them home.

RELATED: Why were these missing WWII heroes buried under pavement?

Follow along his journey here:

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