Retired Mammoth Police Sgt. Paul Dostie and Buster Receive High Praise for Work in Help Locating Remains of WWII MIA'S.

Los Angeles, California
January 21, 2014

Sgt. Paul Dostie (ret.) and Buster on Tarawa

Mark Noah, Sgt. Paul Dostie (ret.) and Buster on Tarawa

“Paul Dostie is a phenomenal dog trainer. It’s fascinating to see them [Dostie and Buster] work together. Buster’s skeptics were proven wrong. The evidence is deafening.” 

 Mark Noah, pilot and owner of History Flight Inc.



In a January 20, 2014 article by Benett Kessler , Dostie, Buster, Help with Tarawa Recoveries retired Mammoth Police Department Sergeant Paul Dostie and his Cadaver dog, Buster received high praise from Mark Noah, the director of History Flight Inc.

History Flight’s primary goal is to, “research and help locate the remains of over 78,000 American service members still missing in action (MIA) from World War II.”

Working with Mark Noah and the History Flight program, to date Buster and Dostie have assisted in locating fifty separate MIA serviceman’s bodies on the island of Tarawa and another seven in Belgium.  They are teamed up and  departing again this week to make additional recovery efforts on Tarawa.

God Speed and Safe Travels to Paul and Buster.

In 2013 Buster and his handler, Sgt. Dostie conducted the first ever forensic search for human remains at the former residence of Dr. George Hill Hodel. Buster “alerted” [indicating he detected the scent of human remains] at four separate locations in the basement of the home and at one location in the rear alley of the residence. See related posts below.

Buster–The Smell of Death

For additional blogs related to Buster and Sgt. Dostie enter key word “Buster” in blog search box.

Also see an excellent article in the NYT on Mark Noah below.

 The Search for the Lost Marines of Tarawa  New York Times 







  1. Jim Henson on January 29, 2014 at 2:10 pm


    Has any effort been made to follow up on Buster’s “hits” behind the Franklin street house?
    Is that area within the Franklin house property lines?


    • Steve Hodel on January 29, 2014 at 2:22 pm

      Hi Jim: Hope to have some news on that real soon now. Stay tuned. Steve

  2. Nils T. Granlund on January 30, 2014 at 10:13 am

    Off Topic: Steve, do you know what became of Ann Toth, Elizabeth Short’s roommate? I am wondering if she gave any interviews in the decades after Short’s murder? thank you

    • Steve Hodel on January 30, 2014 at 10:51 am

      NTG: No, haven’t researched her after 1947. Didn’t ever come across anything connected to her after those initial articles that year. Best, Steve

  3. Mike on February 22, 2016 at 3:54 pm

    Any idea how to get a hold of Sgt. Paul Dostie my grandfather Vern Burandt was on the raiding party. He’s the one that found them living at the Barker ranch. He took the guns the day he was out there. I might have information no one knows. He told me all the stories …

    Tex wasn’t hand cuffed. He asked my grandad “aren’t you gonna cuff me?” Grandpa said “No, if you run I’ll just kill you”

    He hauled all the girls out in his state truck.

    Steve you may have looked for me or my mother for this story??

    Anyways. Sgt. Pauls email?


    • Steve Hodel on February 22, 2016 at 4:01 pm

      I will pass your message and email on to Paul and he can contact you. Steve

  4. Eric leintz on April 13, 2016 at 8:50 pm

    Hey Steve I’m the owner of historical investigative science I’m looking to contact paul dostie I know buster died I need to find a cadaver dog in the Bay Area sf thought he would know a good one can you help thanks

    • Steve Hodel on April 13, 2016 at 8:54 pm

      Hi Eric: Sure. I will pass your request to contact him on to Paul. Regards, Steve

  5. Ryan Ford on October 4, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    Hi Steve,

    My name is Ryan Ford and I’m sort of a de facto representative of a non-profit wilderness preservation society named American River Conservatory in the Sierra Nevadas of Northern California. One of the properties they are in charge of is the Wakamatsu Tea & Silk Colony site, which has been recognized by the state of California and the Federal Government as the first Japanese Settlement on U. S. mainland soil.

    The property is also the burial site of the first known to be Japanese female (Okei) to die and be buried in the mainland U. S. in 1871.

    There is rumored to also be a Japanese infant to be buried near Okei in the 1920’s that we were hoping Paul and Buster could help us with. Hearing that Buster has died, we would like a recommendation from Paul who in our region we could contact to help us with our search.

    Thank you. Ryan

    • Steve Hodel on October 4, 2016 at 3:20 pm

      Hi Ryan: I will pass your request on to Paul Dostie. Best, Steve

  6. Eric leintz on December 19, 2018 at 10:47 am

    Thanks steve for the fast hook up with Paul Dostie we have became friends and are working together at solving mysteries. One note we have cracked ! The case of California bandit Joaquin Murrieta , he was not killed by the rangers in 1853 , he was buried in the Adobe hideout by the bay. Also found six other sites whose locations were unknown prepping for a tv series called OPERATION LOST TREASURE thanks bud!

    • Steve Hodel on December 19, 2018 at 11:35 am

      Eric L. Glad it worked out. Yes, Paul is one of the “Good Guys”. I remember our mom taking us to and talking about the legend of Joaquin Murrieta when we lived out in Rancho Mirage near Palm Springs as boys. Good luck on the series.

  7. Don Allen, DVM on July 16, 2022 at 7:07 pm

    I would like to reconnect with Paul. I accompanied Paul and Buster as veterinary support on trips to Tarawa and Belgium. I have a new GSD puppy from the Monks of New Skete in NY that has exceptional scenting ability. She, “Questa,” is 5 months old tomorrow, and I’m hoping to scent train her, and maybe cadaver after we complete CGC obedience first.

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