Last updated: 7 May 2008

Robert Adams
DOB: 23 April 1946
DOD: 10 November 2002
Robert was in the 281st from 6/66-6/67 and served as a pilot.  He lived in La Crescent, MN with his wife Betty and was killed in a motorcycle accident.

Craig Smith Albee
DOD:  5 September 2006
Craig passed away on September 5th at the age of 60 after a long struggle with Parkinson's disease.  His services was held on September 11th in the Fernley Veterans Memorial Cemetery, near his home in Sun Valley, NV.  Craig served in the Rat Pack Platoon in early 1969 then became the 281st AHC Maintenance Officer from June '69 until his rotation to CONUS in April 1970.  He was on active duty for nine years before transferring to the Army National Guard where he served another 21 years until his retirement as a distinguished veteran and officer.
Craig's son Geoff can be contacted at: gtp1994@hotmail.com

Raymond C. 'Ray' Atwell
DOD: 5 January 2006

Ray was an Intruder in 1966/67.  He passed away at his home in
New Gloucester, Maine from complications related to a lung transplant he received in 2003.  He  had suffered for 13 years with respiratory problems.  In December he asked to go home from the Veterans hospital in Richmond, VA so he could be with his family and die at home.  The home address to contact his family is:
Mrs. Donna Atwell
#11 Donnas Lane
New Gloucester, ME  04260
E-Mail:  RayDon@securespeed.us

Lt. Robert G. Ausness, USCG
DOD: 17 Jan 1979
Served as a CW2 with the 281st in 1968-1969. He was assigned to each of the platoons with the majority of his time spent with the Wolfpack. 
Lt. Ausness was killed with 3 other crewmembers while flying for the US Coast Guard out of Opa Locka Coast Guard Station, Miami, FL, when his Sikorsky HH-52A Seaguard helicopter was involved in a midair collision during their landing descent with a civilian helicopter in a takeoff climb.  Both aircraft had been cleared by the tower along parallel flight paths, but were not advised of each other.   There were no survivors.

Robert P. Austerberry
17 Nov 1948
DOD: 21 Sep 2000
Last residence: 17901 Schuylkill, Pottsville, PA.

Maj. Charles (Chuck) E.G. Baird, USA Ret.
DOD: Jan 1995
Served as a CWO-2 with the 6th Platoon and the 281st in 1965-66. Major Baird was flying for a coal mining company in the PA area when he was killed in a helicopter accident, described as follows;
“On January 18, 1995, about 1805 Eastern Standard Time, an Agusta A109C, N1WD, owned by Leffler Transportation Company and piloted by Charles E. Baird, was destroyed when it impacted in an open field near the Deck Airport, Jackson Township, Pennsylvania. The pilot and both company employee passengers were fatally injured. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed, and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan had been filed for the flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.”
Major Baird was living in the vicinity of Harrisburg, PA. at the time of his death.

Richard Baker
DOD: May 1973
C/E Bandits 69/70 Richard was killed in motorcycle accident in route to Ft Bragg, CA on Henry Harpster’s bike. Richard had borrowed Harpster’s bike to visit Paul Swol and during the trip he crashed head on into a van. 

Roland S. Bato 
DOB: 27 Feb 1944
DOD: 14 Dec 2001

Last Known Residence: 91761 San Bernardino, Ontario, CA

Eugene H. Baxley
DOD: 3 June 2002 
Reported by Don Creed
Svc Plt, 66 - 67
34734 View Drive
Yucaipa, CA 92399
Tel: 909-797-4540

Gilles D. Belanger
DOD: 23 March 1995
A C/E with the Wolfpack, Gilles died in Holyoke, MA of various illnesses related to his military service. He is survived by his wife, Annette Belanger of Holyoke, MA.

John L. Bilyeu 
DOB: 15 May 1950
DOD: 16 Mar 1998

John Served in the 281st AHC from July of  1970 until November 1970.

My father was John L. Bilyeu?  Please let me know if you knew him and any other info on him would be great. He joined the army in Dec 1969 and left for Vietnam right  after AIT.  His first unit there was the 281st and then he moved on to  the 135th AHC.  He stayed in the Army for 20 years and retired as an E-7.  I think he enjoyed it.  He was married 3 times his last wife being from Germany. still living in Ozark MO he had 4 children 3 girls and 1 Boy.  He was always very devilish.  tall and thin. long neck.  we always called him a red neck because his neck never tanned. only turned red....He died March 16,1998"  (picture)   Heather (Bilyeu) Cooper  hooper@apecgas.com

Sgt. David Bitle
DOD: 27 September 2000
Served as a Gunner, Crew Chief and Platoon Sergeant of the Wolf Pack from 1965 –1968.  Sgt. Bitle was living in Hawaii at the time of his death. He is buried at the National Memorial Cemetery, Punchbowl, Hawaii. 
Wolfpack Memorial Page

Frank Owen Bonnarens 
DOD: 19 September 1968 
DOB: 11 February 1932
Major Bonnarens came to the 281st as part of an infusion program and served approximately two month before returning to the states in 1966. He was a 14-year army veteran from Browning, MO serving his second tour in Vietnam at the time of his death, which was the result of a non-hostile aircraft accident (OH-6 #67-16015).

John Bolas
DOD: September 1993

John was a
man who talked very little of Vietnam but he insisted on helping vets whenever he could. He was a member of the D.A.V., the American Legion, the V.V.I., the AMVETS, the 5th Spec. Forces Grp., and several other organizations.  He was a member of the Rat Pack Platoon, and wrote to the 281st AHC newsletter at least in 1988. John beat cancer once but not the second time. he died in September of 1993 from lung cancer, and cancer of the brain.  It only took him 2+ yrs. to fully die because he kept fighting until there was no fight left in him or it wasn't enough, he survived at least two tours of 'Nam but he didn't make it the final tour of hell. My children never knew their grandfather for whom my son is named, but I will never let them forget his sacrifice and mine so they may live free. I will always love him and miss him daily, for he was my father no matter what had happened over there. We miss him so.  
John Bolas,

CPT James 'Jim' Brown
DOB: 25 Nov 1946

DOD: 8 Feb 1999
Jim served as the platoon leader of the Wolfpack during 69-70.  Jim and Bob George were very close friends in the 281st and remained so throughout their lives after Vietnam. Jim died of lung cancer attributed to Agent Orange, as did Bob George exactly nine days after Jim’s death. He was living at 32937, Satellite Beach, Bevard, FL, at the time of his death. 

SSG Mahlon E. Buckalew
DOB: 8 Feb 1931
16 Oct 1978
Last Address: 76574 Taylor, Williamson County, TX
SSG Buckalew was a Wolf Pack Plt SGT, and could have been a Fang Plt Sgt, or both. Was there 1965 – 1966.  But he is know to have been there, and passed away of cancer a few years after his tours.  Questions: contact Bill Perren.

Mahlon Buckalew was a door gunner with the 6th Airlift Platoon "Fangs" in 65 and 66. When the 281st was formed, he was the Wolfpack's first Platoon Sergeant and the guy who taught the fresh-off-the-boat gunners and crew chiefs how to handle an M-60.
In May 66, Sergeant Buck singlehandedly saved his crew, including me, in a nasty and quick firefight north of Tay Ninh. For that he was the first Intruder, and the first member of the 10th CAB, to be awarded the Silver Star.
His son found his name on our website and I've just received a couple of emails from his kids, which I'm pleased to pass along to all of you.

Fred Phillips

Hello Mr.Phillips,
My name is Mahlon Buckalew Jr. It was nice to know that someone remembered my father from the war. If you want to get in contact with me here is my e-mail address.  mahlon68@aol.com

Bobby D. Bumbalough
DOB: 15 Oct 1944
DOD: 2 May 1990
Last known address: 211 3rd Avenue N, Baxter,TN 38544

SP4 James L. Byers, 246-80-5405, RA 53524779
DOB: 3 March 1947
DOD: May 1977

Came to 281st 28 Dec 67 from the 61st Avn Co.  Departed 281st 10 Aug 68, went to the 192nd Avn Co for the remainder of his tour under the Infusion Program. James was living at 27261 High Point, Guilford, NC at the time of his death. 

John J. "Jack"  Callaghan
DOB: 25 Apr 1949
DOD: 24 Aug 2002
Jack's hometown was in Pennsylvania.  Following Vietnam Jack worked as a Correctional Officer in the PA prison system.  He is survived by one daughter and his wife Kathy who resides at : 152 Wood Street, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702, phone:  570-829-1041
[Photo1 - Photo2 - Photo3 of Jack Callaghan provided by JR Saunders]

SSG Gerald A. Carel  
DOB: 16 Apr 1933   
DOD: 7 Jul 1999
Residence:  45002  Cleves, Hamilton, OH

Alan Carter
Jun 1976
Crew chief with the "Rat-Pack” 70s. Reported to have been killed in an auto accident.

CW2 Thomas Carter
DOB: 23 April 1950

DOD: August 1984
Served as a WO with the Bandit Platoon (Bandit 22, affectionately known as “Mad Dog”) in 68-69. He later served in the Michigan National Guard.  Thomas was killed in a Helicopter Accident while transporting seismographic equipment on a sling load when, on takeoff, the load caught in trees and brought the aircraft down. Tom's last address was 48224 Detroit, Wayne MI. He was interned at Houghton Lake, MI with full military honors and a fly-by conducted by the Michigan National Guard.

CW5 James E. Cary
DOD: 23 May 2001
Jim served in the Rat Pack Platoon 1/68-12/68 His residence at the time of his death was Frankfort, KY. Warrant Officer Jim Cary after a month of leave arrived in the Republic of Vietnam on 6 May 1968 and was assigned to the 281st AHC and eventually became a highly trained and skilled pilot with the 1st Platoon, Rat Pack.  On 5 November 1968 in support of Delta Project, Jim was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroic actions that day.
Jim was laid to rest on 26 May 2001 in the Camp Nelson National Cemetery, located about 10 miles south of Lexington. He was survived by a son, James Michael Cary, Frankfort; two daughters, Sandra McMichael and Julie Cary, both of McDonough, Georgia; his father James G. Cary, Pensacola, Florida; his mother, Laura M. Holland, Miami, Florida; and a sister, Barbara Ham, Oahu, Hawaii.
[See Jim Cary Personal Story]

John M. Craft
21 Dec 1951
DOD: 1 Oct 1998

LTC. Herbert L. Degner (USA Ret.) 
DOB: 01-29-1936 
DOD: 07-03-2000
Herbert entered the United States Army in September 1959 as a Commissioned Officer and was assigned as a Platoon Leader to the 52nd ARB, 2nd Missile Command at Ft. Carson, CO.  While there he completed the Infantry Officer’s Basic Course at Ft. Benning, GA receiving his Expert Infantryman’s Badge.

He attended ORWAC, Class 62-8 in which he was the Honor Graduate.  After completing flight school he was assigned to the Army Aviation Test Board as one of the Test Pilots for the Chinook.  He served in this capacity until he was sent to Vietnam in August of 1964.  He flew UH-1Bs as a Section Leader of the 145th Airlift Platoon.  In August of 1965 he returned to Ft. Rucker and the Army Aviation Center until December of 1967. 

He returned to Vietnam in January 1968 for a second Tour of Duty as a Platoon Leader flying Chinooks for the 147th ASHC of the 222nd Aviation Bn. On 4 May 1968, Hillclimber 027 performed one of the fastest air rescues of the Vietnam Conflict. Major Herbert Degner and CW2 Samuel Taylor were returning to Vung Tau from Xuan Loc after a re-supply mission. The FE SPC4 James Choate observed an USAF O-1 crash directly below them. SPC4 Choate informed the pilots and they entered a descent. Landing near the crash site, the crewmembers were dispatched to assist downed aviators. Neither pilot appeared seriously injured. They were loaded on 027 to Vung Tau and the ambulance was called in-flight and standing by. Total time from crash to hospital was 31 minutes.  In June 1968, he was transferred to the 1st Aviation Bde. serving as the S-3 Training Officer.  

From Vietnam he served as Company Commander of 154th TC Detachment and later as Commander of HHC, 21st Avn Bn. at Ft. Sill, OK between January 1969 and September 1970.   He then served as Commander of the 568th Transportation Company and later as the S-4 for the 222nd Avn. Bn. at Ft. Wainwright, AK.  He was transferred to Ft. Richardson, AK and served at HQ, USARAL in the Maintenance Section through July of 1975.

In July of 1975 he was sent to the 190th ASHC, USAR in Olathe, KS as the Aviation Advisor and completed the Army Command and General Staff College while there.  He made his last logged flight in June 1978 prior to being assigned as the Assistant DIO for V Corps in Frankfurt, Germany.  Part of his duties there included devising a Corps wide evacuation order known as the NEO Plan.  He also assisted with the Evacuation of the American Hostages from Tehran, Iran to Rhine-Main Air Force Base after they were released from captivity.

He chose Ft. McCoy, WI as his final tour of duty and was assigned as a Training Officer for the Readiness Group, which supervised many National Guard and Reserve Units in the Upper Midwest.  In March of 1982 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and became the Executive Officer of the Readiness Group.

He retired in August 1984 with a 100% disability due to Multiple Sclerosis, which he had developed in early 1981, because it had affected his ability to walk.  In his health he enjoyed big game hunting and camping with his family.  Colonel Degner is survived by his son Fritz Degner.
E-mail:  sniperteam2@yahoo.com

Kenneth E. Dickey(picture)
DOB: 24 Dec 1948
DOD: 11 Mar 1976

SP/5 John Paul Doney Sr. SSN 541-54-5293
DOD: 14 November 2000, in Beaverton, Oregon
DOB: 18 April 1947, in Astoria, Oregon
Assigned to the 281st in early '68 (Jan. or Feb.). Spent some time in Rat Pack, about a month in Wolf Pack, and then went to Maint. as a tech inspector. John graduated from Warrenton, Oregon High School, enlisted in U.S. Army for 3 years on 10 May 1966. Attended 11 weeks SESR TBN utility Helicopter Mech. and the 6 weeks MTR Hel Mech. Awarded a Military specialty of 67N20 Helicopter Mechanic. John was one of five brothers of which he and his brothers Robert and Norman served in Vietnam at the same time. After Vietnam John continued his education and became a commercial fisherman. Four children, John Paul Jr. 26, Nathan Charles 23, Colette 19 and Jason 14, survive him.

Gary Downey
DOD: 28 Oct, 1999
Gary was the 281st Company Clerk from 1969 until 11/70 and was considered our own "Radar O'Reilly"  His wife Michelle said Gary fought cancer for over a year.  They lived in the Houston area.

Donnie Neal Drawdy
DOB: 1948
DOD: 12 Sep
Was a member of the 281st AHC in 1968-69.  Donnie was from Brunswick
, GA and died at the age of 55 on September 12 in Jesup, GA.  He was a lifelong resident of Glynn County and a 1966 graduate of Glynn Academy. He was employed with Georgia Pacific for 32 years.  Donnie is survived by two sons, Donnie Drawdy Jr. and Robert Drawdy, both of Brunswick, GA.  

Robert L. 'Bob' Eddy
DOD: 14 Apr 2005
Bob was a member of the 499th Signal Det.  Bob died at his home in Wilkes Barre, PA.  He is survived by his wife Helen.

CWO Bob Edgley. 
DOD: 26 October 1999. 
Bob Served in both the Rat Pack and Wolfpack platoons. Prior to the 281st Bob flew with A Troop of the 229 Cav. following his service with the 281st he flew with Air America. Upon returning to the states he flew for the Boston Police Dept. Bob was raised in upper New York. His last address was 786 Lawrenceburg Loop, Bloomfield, KY 4008His wife Paula survives him.

Fred Ellis
DOB: 12 March 1947 
DOD: 14 Feb 1977
Fred E. Ellis was a member of the 281st from 1967 to 1969 - serving most of that time in the Motor Pool.  I'm told that he later transferred to aircraft maint in the end of 1968 - Mike Feely
"I would like to pass on some information about one of our fellow Intruders who passed on sometime in the mid seventies. His name was Fred Ellis. Fred was in the company before I arrived in May of '67, and he was there after I left in December of '68. I don't know how long he was there, it had to be at least two years or more. Fred worked in the motor pool  as the records clerk, I think. Later, just a few months before I left he had transferred into aircraft maintenance. After he returned I went to visit him in Tulsa, OK, that was in the winter of '71. He was selling insurance. Sometime after that, I think it was in '74,'75,or '76, I received a letter from Mike Feely with a letter from Fred's mother. She said Fred was found dead in his apartment, didn't mention a cause of death. She went on to say they had buried him in Houston, TX.  Mike Feely might have a better recollection of the letter than I.  I thought I would pass this along as Fred was one of a kind, and I'm sure there are a lot fellow intruders who remember him.  (picture)
Sincerely, Jim Christensen"

Joe B. Foster
DOB: 13 Feb 1948
DOD: 3 Aug 2002

Last Address: P.O. Box 1600, Waterflow, NM 87421

COL Robert J. "Pete" Frazier
Colonel Robert J. “Pete” Frazier, 084709, reportedly died of unknown causes several years ago.  As a captain he was Executive Officer when assigned to the 145th and 6th Airlift Platoons in the Republic of  South Vietnam in 1965 and ’66 under Kevin Murphy, the Commanding Officer. These platoons were later integrated into the 281st Assault Helicopter Company. Unit orders from this period showed that Pete had been appointed as an Aircraft Commander. Pete was born and raised near Raleigh, NC. While assigned to the Pentagon between Vietnam tours Pete purchased a home in the Mt. Vernon area. Pete had two daughters. On his second Vietnam tour Pete commanded a CH-47 Chinook unit, Company A, 159th Assault Helicopter Battalion, 101st Airborne Division.
[Contributors to this Memoriam are Joe Thurston, John Hyatt and Bill Perrin.]

Charles J. Furcinite
19 Aug 1949
DOD: 12 July 2001
Last residence: 12168 Stephentown, Rensselaer, NY,

Ricardo M. Garcia 
DOB: 15 Sep 1951
DOD: 18 Sep 1978
Last residence: Virginia

CW2 Robert L. George
DOB: 11 Jan 1949

DOD: 17 Feb 1999
CWO Bob George was born in Johnstown, PA, January 11, 1949. 
Served with the Wolfpack Platoon as “Wolfpack 38” 3/69-3/70 
Robert’s wife Linda lives in East Stroudsburg, PA, and is an Honorary Member of the 281st AHC Association.
Bob George and Jim Brown remained steadfast friends throughout their lives since first serving together in Vietnam with the 281st AHC.  They both died of cancer within nine days of each other. 
Bob was interred at Arlington National Cemetery, Section 68, Grave 2745.  His date of death was 17 February, 1999. Bob’s awards include the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star with cluster, Air Medal with clusters, Purple Heart, enlisted Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal and various decorations. He won Expert and Sharpshooter badges for four different weapons and he wore the Army Aviator Badge with pride.
(See Bob George Personal Story page.)

SP4 Bennie J. Goins
DOD:  26 May 1996

SP4 Bennie J. Goins arrived in Vietnam on February 26, 1966 and spent his entire tour with the 281st AHC as a helicopter crew chief.  Bennie was on a extraction mission in August 1966 when he won the Purple Heart medal for a left leg injury and a broken right middle finger due to a crash landing all the while he was still firing at the enemy. According  to the pilot of the mission, Major Reino Oksa, he asked Bennie if he could still shoot because he noticed Goins’ right finger severely out of alignment.  Bennie replied, “You better believe it.”  Major Oksa has stated that SP4 Goins was his crew chief on a number of missions explaining that Bennie was not only a outstanding crew member who always kept his assigned helicopter in A-1 condition but trained the infantry door gunner to become an assistant helicopter crew chief.  Major Oksa also stated that Bennie was an excellent marksman with the M-60 machine gun fired from the open doors of the helicopter.  In addition to his Purple Heart Bennie was awarded the air medal, with six clusters, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with silver star.  Upon leaving the service Bennie lived with his family at 288 Wilmouth Road, Sanford, NC. He fathered two boys and three girls.  Bennie passed away on May 26, 1996 due to a heart attack. He was buried at the Center United Methodist Church Cemetery in Sanford, NC. The above data was provided by Janette Hearn, daughter of Bennie and Reino Oksa former Platoon Commander and Executive Officer of the 281st AHC.

Bennie Goins (son)
288 Wilmouth Road
Sanford, NC 27330-7569
Tel: 919-775-1265

SP4 George Gomez 586-05-3075
DOB: 26 Sep 1949
DOD: 16 July 1978
Gunner, 69/70 Bandits/ Wolf Pack  George, an accomplished jockey, was Injured in racing accident and died a month later. George was from Guam and never saw a horse or wore shoes until he joined the Army. Following his first tour in Vietnam George went to the Pentagon to request that he be allowed to return. In December of 1969 he joined the 281st where he served his second tour. When he was discharged he went to live with the family of Doug Powel who had been his buddy in the 281st. Doug’s father took George under his wing and introduced him to the horse racing industry. At 4’11” inches and 105 pounds George went on to become a record breaking jockey at Calder Track in Florida. George was buried at Hialeah Vista Memorial Gardens, Hialeah, FL. His wife Sharon a daughter Melanie and a son Robert survive him. 
Newspaper Article

CPT Paul Leroy Graffe
DOB: 19 Aug 1946
DOD: 3 Oct 1969      

CPT Graffe died at age 27 while piloting OV-1 Mohawk SN 61-02679 for the 225th Aviation Company on a surveillance mission out of Phu Hiep, RVN, on 3 October, 1969, crashed at the 7,000 ft. level of a mountain peak north of Kontum, in inclement weather. Capt. Graffe was accompanied by his observer, PFC Kenneth L. Cunningham. Both crew members are still listed as MIA. The aircraft, call sign, Phantom Hawk 01, departed Phu Hiep during the early evening hours on a mission to gather intelligence in Military Region II in the Dak To-Dak Pek area which was believed to be heavily infested with enemy forces. The last radio contact with the crew had been made by another OV-l crew who said that Graffe had advised them that he was extending his mission for 30 minutes before returning to base. The aircraft was located on October 5th. Search teams could not reach the area on the 5th and 6th of October due to extremely bad weather. A search aircraft and crew reached the area on the 7th. However, because of enemy activity and evidence that the wreckage had been moved about since the last aerial sighting, the search was aborted. CPT Graffe had served a previous tour in RVN in 1966 with the 281st AHC when he was a Warrant Officer. During his tour with the 225th OV-1 CO he received a direct commission to first lieutenant on July 18, 1969. He was promoted to Captain posthumously. His date of birth is August 19, 1946.  His home of record is Shelton, WA. For further details from the 225th Aviation Company's daily log go to The Virtual Wall web site and follow the instructions to CPT Paul Leroy Graffe. 

Capt. Graffe is listed on Panel 17W, Row 34 on the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial Wall. 
[Our own John Hyatt remembers serving with Paul at Ft. Rucker where they were both helicopter IP's prior to Paul's orders to OV-1 transition. Fred Phillips also contributed to this memorial.]

Steve Grimshaw
Was from Atlanta, GA and served with the 281st AHC as an armorer in 1967.

Everdus H. Hackett
DOB: 23 Oct 1922
DOD: 20 Dec 1997
Major Hackett was the first commander of the 281st Avn Co.  He, along with 1SG J. B. Cooley, formed the 281st Avn Co. at Ft. Benning, GA and deployed with all the stateside unit assets to South Vietnam.  He reorganized the stateside assets and in-country assets of 2nd Plt, 171st Avn Co. into the full compliment of 281st AHC.  His last known residence was San Ripon, CA.

Richie Hamlin
DOB: 31 Jul 1946 
DOD: Dec 1978 in Honolulu, HI

Michael F. Hargis
DOD: 23 November 2003

Mike was a Rat Pack Crew Chief on #727 from March 1967 until May 1969.  He lived in
Keller, TX with his wife Ann at the time of his death.

Hank Harpster
DOD: 15 April 1974 (Easter Sunday.)
Served as a Crew Chief with the Bandit Platoon, 69/70 Hank was traveling to Ft. Bragg, CA to visit with Paul Swol when he was killed in a motorcycle accident. Pall bearers for Hank were Paul Swol, Paul Leonard, Dave Gow and Doug Powel, most in tiger stripes. 

CWO Don C. Hildebrand
DOD: 30 November 1994.DOB: 1 December 1943
Don served in the 281st 1967-68  Flight Class: 66-21/66-23
Don served as the second President of the Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Assn.  He was residing in Tucson, AZ at the time of his death and is survived by his wife Kathy. Don’s death was the result of a heart attack.

Glenn Hosey
11 Dec 1947
DOD: 2 Feb 1999
Last Residence: 39443 Jones, Laurel, MS

Donald Ray Hoskin
DOB: 12 Oct 1948
DOD: 21 Feb 2005
Don passed away at home in Redlands, CA, where he had lived for 20 years. He was born in Long Beach, CA. Don began his career with 4 tours of duty in Vietnam. He served at Ft. Riley, KK, Neu Ulm, Germany and Fort Ord, California. Don was assistant area commander for the US Army Recruiting District of San Bernandino County; from which he retired in Redlands, CA. During his military career Don was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Meritorious Service Medal, Purple Heart, 3 Air Medals, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal. After retirement he spent 16 years as a dedicated service advisor at Fairview Ford in San Bernandino. Don is survived by his wife, Christine Hoskin of Redlands; son Bob Hoskin of Redlands; daughter, Tracey & husband Jim Gumke of Apple Valley, CA.; his mother Maxine Hoskin of West Covina; brother Richard Hoskin of Covina; brother, Robbie Hoskin of Lucerne Valley; three adoring grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. Burial was at Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, CA. Staging Area #4 with full military honors.

James L. Howlett 
DOB: 21 Apr 1951,
DOD:  15 Jul 1989
James was from Nebraska

Frank V. Iams
DOD: 29 Nov 1999

Frank was in the 281st AHC in 1968-1969.  He died from prostate cancer.  After his military service he worked for a time for the railroad, then was self-employed in the construction business.

SFC Rudolph Jones
DOB: 2 Oct 1927
DOD: November 1979
Last residence: Pikeville, NC.

CW2 Stephen F. Kay
DOD: 14 Feb 1969
Steve died as a result of an aircraft accident on February 14, 1969. He was a graduate of class 67-17 at Ft. Rucker, Al.

Belton W. King
DOD: 1999
As you know I had sent out some postcards to several addresses we had come up with in our search for Belton W. King and James Goff. One of the cards came back as undeliverable for Goff and this morning we received a call from a friend of Belton King's. He said that he and Belton were lifelong friends and that Belton died approx. 3 years ago. Just thought you would want to know.  Rhonda Perren

John Korsbeck
DOB: 1 Jun 1945
DOD: 1 May 2008

John W. Korsbeck, 62 of Malta, died Thursday at a Malta hospital of complications from exposure to chemicals used in the Vietnam War.  His memorial service is at 1300hrs Thursday at Adams Memorial Chapel, followed by Military Honors. A lunch will be held at the VFW in Malta. Survivors include his wife Judy Korsbeck of Malta, a son Kelly Korsbeck of Elyria, Ohio, a daughter Kristie (Kelly) Rutledge of Big Sandy, his mother Ellen Korsbeck of Malta,  sisters, Sue (Dwight) Bomer of McAllistar, Okla. , and Darlene "Chick" (Jim) Brogan of Wilsall; and grandchildren Brantly, Andrea, and Lance Rutledge also of Big Sandy. John was born June 1st, 1945 in Havreg to J.F. "Jack" and Ellen (Kangas) Korsbeck. He attended grade school in South Wagner and Malta High and Graduated in 1963. He married Judy Charlton on Nov. 6th, 1965. John enlisted in the Army in 1966. He spent two years as a Green Beret with the Special Forces and six years as a helicopter pilot. He served two tours in Vietnam and returned to Malta in 1974 and retired in 2005. He Loved country music and played in various bands over the years. Condolences may be posted online at,
www.gftribune.com/obituaries published in the Great Falls Tribune on 05/04/2008

Philip Krajenta
DOD: 18 Jun 2002

Phil passed away after a long illness.
Kathy Pozzi (sister)
District Marketing Coordinator
Phone: 813.282.7275, ext. 526

From: Jim Christensen
I'm sorry to hear about Krajenta. I don't know  if anybody remembers or not but, I'm pretty sure, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. If my memory serves me correctly it was during the operations were conducting out of the Kontum area in Nov of '67 through Feb? of '68. I don't recall which of the flight platoons he was in. After that adventure I think he returned to maintenance. He was an alright guy.  Jim

Jerry L. Kroeck 
DOB: 19 Dec 1945
DOD: 10 Jun 1997,
Last residence: 2347 Private Rd 3901D, Henderson TX 75654

Allan R. Larson
DOD:  1980

"My uncle was Allan Larson.  He was an Army Helicopter Pilot when I was a little kid.  Looking through some family tree stuff, I just found the order giving him a medal [ ARCOM w/"V" ] for picking up four wounded men out of a mine field and transporting them to a Saigon hospital after sustaining severe damage to the craft.  That was on Jan 10, 1967 with the 281st.  Allan died in 1980 from cancer presumably caused by his encounters with Agent Orange."
Karl Anderson

Edmundo L. Lopez 
DOB: 16 Nov 1947
DOD: 10 Dec 1999

Died in California.  Wife lives at: 2363 Zebobia Way, Sacramento CA 95834

Joe MacCartney
DOD: 5 June 2002
Joe was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer with metastasis to the brain in April 2001. As he was 100% disabled (PTSD) by VA, the cancer was also deemed as service related.  Joe spoke often and candidly of the experiences that he had with the 281st. Especially while he was dealing with his aspects of PTSD.  He was a Bandit CE 10/68-9/69. 

"As Joe's brother-in-law and a Viet Vet (101st Abn), I lived within 2 blocks of Joe for the past 10 years and saw him frequently. The past year was rough and past week was the worst."  
Loren Larson: 
Sandy MacCartney:  ladysandra@tenforward.com

1SG Johnny C. Martin
DOB: 13 Jul 1935

DOD: 11 May 1972
1SG Martin  served with the 281st AHC in the following positions:
25 Nov '68, Det. 1st SGT., 483rd TC Det.
22 Jan '69, Plt SGT., 281st AHC
10 June '69, 1st SGT., 281st AHC
(Promoted to E-8, 1st SGT on 12 June 69)
12 Dec 69 Left 281st AHC enroute to CONUS

1SG Martin had returned to Vietnam on January 8, 1972 at the age of 36.  On the morning of 11 May 1972, 1st SGT. Martin was sleeping in his room in the F Troop, 4th US Cavalry barracks area, Bien Hoa, Long Binh, South Vietnam when an explosive device was intentionally detonated outside his room seriously wounding him. He was transported to the 24th Evacuation Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. PVT. Claude B. Johnson and PFC Marvin J. Dukes of F Troop were charged with his murder and tried by general court martial on 1 Sept. 1972.

1SG Martin was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal. 

He was born in Jefferson, AL on 13 July 1935. At the time of his death he was married to Raquel Martin who resided at 4756 Vermont Ave., Birmingham, Al 35210, with their two children, John and Ann. 

1SG Martin's name is engraved on the Vietnam Memorial Wall at Panel 01W, Line 24. 

CPT David M. May
DOB:  29 Jan 1945
DOD: Feb 1971 MIA
David became a casualty in LAOS at the age of 28 when he and his crew, while flying a Huey gunship, were shot down. As the 281st AHC was being drawn down David had been transferred to the 48th AHC. David's gunship was the second in a trail of two while participating in Operation Lahn Sohn 719, a tri-border operation designed to cut the Ho Chi Minh trail at the Laotian panhandle. After the aircraft crashed it was reported that some of the crew members were shot exiting the aircraft on the ground. His co-pilot on the operation was CWO Jon Reid. This memorial information was provided by David's friend and roommate, John Quatman, Jr., and Kevin Farrington, both of whom knew David while assigned to the 281st AHC. David was married and had an infant son when he died, also named David. David Sr. was from Hyattsville, Md. 

Gretchen Traylor, who wore David's MIA bracelet for 17 years, provides more interesting insight into the recovery of David's and Jon's remains in Laos in early 2,000. She also provides a most interesting disclosure of how she was finally able to reunite the bracelet she had worn so many years with David's surviving son. Also, Gretchen has provided web site information which allows us to view the joint funeral and burial of David's and Jon's remains at Arlington in the same casket, as both families desired. 
"I have worn David's (Captain David May) POW-MIA bracelet since receiving it in 1972. All these years I have prayed for him, and recently found out the resolution of his case. I have heard from his former wife, and today was finally able to give up his bracelet to his son. He was a true hero to me and to others, and I wish I had the chance to meet him in this world.. I will be looking forward to meeting him in the next. Thanks David, for your sacrifice; pray for the rest of us left here, please! Love, Gretchen"

He is listed on the Vietnam Memorial Wall at Panel 05-W, Line 125.

SP4 William "Bill" Meehan
Bill was a door gunner for the 281st AHC, hometown, Minneapolis, MN. He was severely wounded in August 1968. 
The following account has been provided by Richard Houston, Bill's close friend in the 281st AHC:
"In reference to Bill Meehan, we served in the same platoon from early 1968 'til august '68. I extended and went home for leave.  While I was home he was shot in the back with a .50 caliber ( I think it was .50 caliber) He was my best friend over there. When I returned from leave I was looking forward to seeing him again and going to the club. I found he was gone and had been shot.  Through much effort I was able to contact his mother and found he was in the hospital at Ft Lewis, WA. I found out that he died several times but managed to live. We kept in contact over the years. When I was discharged in 1978 I bought an eighteen wheeler and traveled 48 states so I was able to visit him. He was living in Roseville, MN He was paralyzed from the chest down. He was doing fine and pretty much went on with his life. On New Year's Eve, 1982, I got a call from his sister that he had died. He died from something happening to his brain. I was so upset I cried uncontrollably so I don't remember exactly what the diagnosis was.  I think he was buried in a military cemetery fairly close to his home.  I don't remember his sister's name or his mothers. I hope this has been helpful to you. I'm glad we are remembering him. He was such a good person and friend." 
Richard Houston

COL Andrew John Miller
DOD:  9 Feb 2005

MAJ Miller was commander of the 28st AHC from August of 1968 until February of 1969.  He was 70 at the time of his death and living in Ozark, AL.  A memorial service was held at 10:00 Monday, Feb. 14th at the Fort Rucker Aviation Museum. Interment followed at 3 pm in Fort Mitchell National Cemetery with full military honors.     Obituary     Memorial Program

Carl E. Miller
DOB: 21 Dec 1931
DOD: 15 May 2002

Last residence: Seale, AL

Robert "Mo" Moberg
DOB:  1933
DOD: 31 May 2004

Bob "Mo" Moberg, American Hero and Friend

In the present climate of nationalism and international disagreement, perhaps a few more people might have read this column if Bob had been simply identified as "Hero and Friend". It is just that "Mo", who at age 71 regrettably lost his fight with cancer, but fittingly did so on May 31, the U.S.'s Memorial Day holiday, was quintessentially American in every sense of the word. He had a cowboy spirit and infectious humor that may have had its origins in his place of birth, Hannibal, Missouri, which also fathered the great American author and humorist, Mark Twain.

Bob enlisted in the Army in the early 1950’s. He was an original member of 10th Special Forces group who had shipped to the Garden of Eden in 1953. He returned to Fort Bragg in 1957 and was assigned to 77th and 7th Special Forces Groups. He was a member of White Star. He served in Vietnam with Project Delta B-52 and the 281st AHC. He was also on Project 404. After retiring he flew for Continental Air Services in Laos that was under contract by the US Government. After the war he was chief pilot for the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), based in Bangkok, Thailand. He also worked on the security team for Chevron Oil in Sudan, and later in Kazakhstan. He finally settled in Thailand. Among his awards and decorations are the Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart, Air Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Master Parachutists Badge, and Master Aviator Badge. He was a member of Chapter III, Special Forces Association and the VFW. He is survived his wife, and a child from a former marriage.

Whatever it was, it was a spirit what was to flourish as a leader of men throughout Southeast Asia in the turbulent 1960's. "Bandit 26" or "City Hall", or what ever call sign you knew Major "Mo" by, saw considerable action in combat in Vietnam and Laos. To list his significant accomplishments, tours and numerous commendations would only invite oversight and is, therefore, better left to a biographer, but if your interest is piqued enter "Robert J. Moberg" or "Intruders" or "Bandits" in your search engine and you will start to gain a feel for the bravery of this man.

Perhaps even more than that is the feeling of camaraderie those who served with him, and under him, evoke in numerous tributes which cite his integrity and his concern for colleagues, the victims caught in the crucible of war and, most importantly to Bob, the children.

It is this camaraderie that was to impress and embrace many more as Bob transitioned to positions assisting the Thai government, working in the civilian sector and in the social settings of Bangkok and Pattaya. Bob was an active member of the Special Forces Association, the VFW chapters of Pattaya and Bangkok, and the Pattaya Sports Club.

Golf became a passion that started back in the early seventies when three sets of golf clubs were sent to his base in Laos and was to be the link that afforded so many more people the opportunity to relish the acquaintance of his endearing character. Whether it was expletive filled personal admonition or a small jab to put the pressure on the day's bet, a round of golf with Bob was always a great laugh and a day any competitor would hope to repeat again soon.

Despite not starting the game until relatively late in life, Bob showed sufficient prowess to reach the low single digits in handicap and to etch his name on many of the golf trophies of both Bangkok and Pattaya. Bob seldom missed a Monday outing with the gang at the Three Sisters Bar and teamed with several of the lads to win Siam's 2004 Friendship Tournament, held just five months ago.

Pattaya, being in no small part a retirement community, suggests that the mean age around town is older and the chance of losing a friend here slightly higher. Therefore, while there are many things to be drawn from the life of Robert J. "Mo" Moberg, perhaps the one he would choose to pass on to each of us is that we cherish the friends we have and always have a kind word for them.

Certainly everyone who met "Mo" cherished him and looked forward to his kind words. God bless you "Mo" because we know He needs some characters up there ... and a good golf partner. So long our friend, you will be missed.

MacAlan Thompson   mact@peak.org


Jack Serig's "Rest of the Story" about Moberg

Raymond K. Moncrief
DOD:  23 Jan 2005
Motor Pool Sergeant 1/66-5/67

Bill Montgomery 
Judy (wife)
709 Mockingbird
Lawton, OK 73507
Tel: 580-355-1327

CPT. Stanley J. "Rudy" Morud
DOD:  25 Feb 2004
From June 66 – May 67 Rudy was the first Co of the Maintenance Det. and took it to Vietnam.  He was a World War II fighter pilot  with a reputation for operating construction equipment with the best of them. He was responsible for a lot of the preparation for the maintenance area and initially setting the maintenance tent up on 55 gal drums.  

"Stanley J. Morud, 79, of Mpls, passed away Wednesday, February 25, 2004. "Stan the Man" was a retired Major of the US Army, serving in WWII, the Korean Conflict, and the Vietnam War. Stan was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and was a member of the Richfield American Legion. Preceded in death by his parents, Sigrud & Ragna (Fureseth) Morud. Funeral services will be 10 AM Saturday, Feb. 28 at Sunset Funeral Home & Cemetery, 2250 St. Anthony Blvd., with a gathering 1/2 hour prior to the service. SUNSET 612-789-1535"

CWO Gary D. O'Connor, 557-62-1964
DOB: 25 July 1945
DOD: 22 Jan 1993
Served as a CW2 in the 145th Platoon and the 281st in 1966.  Gary was living in Ventura, CA at the time of his death, which resulted from an accident.

George E. Olsen
DOB: 6 Jan 1933
DOD: 29 Nov 1997
Last residence: 624 Cable Ave, Beachwood NJ  08722

Thomas J. Pagliarini
26 Jun 1950
DOD: 6 Apr 1974
From Rhode Island

Joseph F. "Joe" Parnell, JR.
DOD: 21 Nov 1988
In 1967 Joe served in the 281st AHC as a fire Team Leader in the Wolf Pack, and he also served as the Admin Officer.  Following a tour  in Germany Joe left the Army as a 1LT.  He worked as a flight instructor in Colorado then joined Continental  Airlines as a pilot.  Joe is survived by his mother Doris who resides in Tijeras, NM and his father,  Maj. Joseph F. Parnell Sr., USAF Ret.  who lives in a nursing home in Pueblo, NM.

Danny G Parr
DOD: March 1984
Died in Sebastian, AR

Terrell "Terry" Kenton Peterman
9 May 1950
DOD: 23 Mar 2008

At his home in Mountain Home, ID, Terrell "Terry" Peterman passed away after a brave two-year battle with brain tumors.  The funeral was held Friday, March 28, at the Mountain Home Church of the Nazarene.  Interment followed at the Idaho Veterans Cemetery in Boise.
Terry was born May 9, 1950, in Nampa, ID. He grew up working on dairy farms in Star, Kuna, Meridian and Middleton with his family until he graduated from Middleton High School in 1969. He then entered the U.S. Army, where he served as a chief warrant officer during the Vietnam War. Terry flew both gun ships and troop-carrying helicopters throughout Vietnam and as part of the military's secret Lam Son Mission into Laos. Terry received commendations for his performance and was awarded two Purple Hearts during his military service.  Upon deactivation of the 281st AHC, Terry was transferred to the 48th AHC to complete his tour in Vietnam.
Terry was a partner with his father, Kenton, and brother, Jerry, in their Peterman Farms agribusiness operation in Mountain Home for the past 34 years. During this time, he used his helicopter experience crop dusting.
Terry is survived by his loving wife of almost seven years, Debbie; sons, Dan of Boise and Ben of Mountain Home; his mother, Ruth; sisters, Kaye Black and Susan Conley (all living in Tampa, FL); his sister, Paula of Shoshone; his brother, and Jerry of Mountain Home. 
(Information submitted by Curtis Haws, 48th AHC buddy.)  Obituary

WO Daniel Peterson
DOD: 3 October 1989
Dan died of cancer and RVN related illnesses.
[Ken 'BOW' Boling, long time friend, has the details.]

Michael R. Phipps
DOB: 4 Aug 1947
DOD: 4 Jan 1999
Bob Mitchell
Jim Minoque had contact with Mike in 1998 and had heard that he had cancer.  He and I tried to locate Mike during 1999, but were unsuccessful.  We didn't have the SSN then.  I found the number on the Social Security Death Index along with his name.  I am very sorry to have missed making contact with him.  Mike, Ron Lesonik and I were room-mates in the SF building near the perimeter fence.  We built the room in mid 1969 from borrowed (stolen) materials from the USAF and 5th SFG.  We were all great friends back then.  Mike was a Bandit Pilot who extended his tour to fly for Wolf Pack.  He was a great pilot and a Great American.

From: Mike Johnson
I was deeply shocked when I read about Mike Phipps death. I have tried to contact him more than a couple of times over the years but with no success, and for this I will always be sorry. I just wanted to say Thanks! Mike was one of the best pilots I ever knew and I credit him in no small way for my survival. He gave me my initial check ride for transition to Guns. He took me under his wing and taught me things I didn’t believe were possible with a Huey. His call sign was Wolfpack 34 and I was proud to inherit it when he left country. I will miss him, even though the last time I saw him was over 30 years ago. This one is hard to take.

Paul Podmajersky
7 Feb 1949
DOD: 9 May 2001
Last residence: Oregon

SSG. Earl Powell
DOB: 4 October 1930
DOD: 27 June 1998

Last residence: 46236  Indianapolis, Marion, IN

Robert B. Purvis
DOB: 7 Jul 1941
DOD: 5 Jul 1994
Last known address was Pennsylvania
Gary Stagman said Robert "was one heck of a good By-the-Book, Tech Supply man, who worked for me in mid 1968."

Jack R. Rogers
DOD: 15 Feb 1991
Died in Knoxville, TN 37919

Darel L. Scott
DOB: 9 Sep 1950
DOD: Feb 1989

From California

Doug Scott
Served in the 281st Was killed in CA. in an accident involving a water truck. 

Fred Shanhart
February 1992
Fred died in Houston, TX from medical complications. He was a graduate of class 67-21 at Ft. Rucker, AL.  He served with the 281st AHC in 1968 and 1969.

Richard D. Sharpe
10 Apr 1948,
DOD: 1 Aug 2000
From Michigan

Patrick M. Sheley
DOB: Apr 1929
DOD: 12 November 2006
Pat was "Intruder 3" Operations Officer in 1968.  He was born in Indiana and served in the US Army from 1947 to 1970 retiring as Lieutenant Colonel.  Pat died after a short Illness.  His wife Chi Yon died in 2001.

Andrew M. Simon
8 Apr 1950
DOD: 3 Sep 1993
From New Jersey

LTC Bobby Sinclair 
Joe Baldwin  67-68
I remember Bobby Sinclair from the 281st AHC.  I flew with him of some test flights. In fact he showed me how to land a chopper down wind. We where up in Kontum where this when this took place and  I was in the left seat. A lot of pilots show me how to fly but Maj. Sinclair showed me some other tactics. He was not a tall man if I remember him but I gave him a lot of respect. I stand 6'2".

From: Lance Ham
I assume this to be the XO we had for a short time.  If so, I saw him once after tour.  I was told to report to the parade field at Fort Rucker some time in 1969 in dress greens.  While standing at attention, I could not see who was approaching until Maj. Sinclair did a left face in front of me.  He said he saw orders where I was to receive a DFC with Oak leaf and had ask to present it.  I thanked him for coming and after the ceremony, which was long with many presentations, he left the area.  I never heard from him again, but always held a fond memory of him going out of his way to remember one he had served with.  Sorry to hear of his passing.  He was one of the good ones and I will miss never seeing him again.  Lance Ham

From: Brent Gourley
Sometime around 1972 Bobby Sinclair showed up to be my Troop commander at D/1-10 at Ft Carson. I was scout IP then, transitioned him to OH-58A. I don't remember him in 281st, although I may have been gone by then.  


CW2 L. A. Smith
DOD: 1974
Served as an A/C with the Bandit platoon. Death was the result of an aircraft crash in Mexico.

Paul J. Swol
DOD: 18 May, 2002
Paul was a Bandit door gunner on A/C #923.  He was in the 281st AHC from April 1969 until May 1970.  Paul died in Ft. Bragg, CA, of complications related to Agent Orange, the day after he was presented with his Air Medal from Vietnam.  A delegation of 281st AHC Intruders was present at the hospital where the Senator from CA pinned the medal on Paul.   Link to memorial article
PO Box 293
17894 Georges Lane
Ft. Bragg, CA  95437
Tel: 707-964-5320
e-mail:  swol@mcn.org

John Turpin
DOD: 11 Oct 2006
John was an Intruder during 1968.  He died in Newport News, VA from a massive heart attack.  He had worked as a Senior Military Advisor for SAIC since 2002.  Prior to that he worked for Logicon/Northrop Grumman for many years after retiring from the Army at Ft, Leavenworth, KS.  He was interred at Ft. Sam Houston, TX.

Lucius Theodore "Ted" Untalan
DOD: Dec 1998
Ted passed away at Guam after a long and painful bout with cancer of the colon in December 1998. Ted is survived by his wife Penny and son Patrick.  Pilot 68-69.
Tribute by Bob Moberg

Samual M. Wall
DOB: 5 May 1948
DOD: Mar 1983
Last known address: RR 3, Spartanburg, SC  29303

Steve Watson
DOD: 11 February 2002

Bob Moberg advises us from the Far East that Steve Watson, a former 281st AHC INTRUDER, passed away 11 Feb 02 in Bangkok, Thailand, reportedly from medical complications.  Steve owned a Hotel/Bar in Bangkok and flew helicopters in that area.
Upon learning of Steve's death Bob Mitchell made the following comment: "Steve was a great gun pilot who covered me many times on insertions and sniffer missions."

"As Steve's platoon leader during 69/70, I can affirm that he was one of the most dedicated men I have ever known. He was brave, adventurous, and patriotic. He never hesitated in accepting a mission, and often volunteered for most. Steve and Stobe usually worked as a team, and together they performed their duties with professionalism and courage. Perhaps the most striking thing I remember about Steve was his enthusiasm, smile, and willingness to serve. Our country, and our unit should be proud of this great American soldier, who was my friend and fellow aviator. I know all of Wolfpack will think of him often, and remember him with love and affection.
James R. "Pappy" Holt
"WolfPack 36"   4/69-4/70

Frank Welch
Warrant Officer Frank Welch served his second tour with the 281st Assault Helicopter Company in the Republic of South Vietnam in 1970 as a UH-1 "slick" pilot. He remained with the 281st until it was deactivated. Frank served his first Vietnam tour as an enlisted specialist with the 5th Special Forces Group. Sometime after his return to the USA, after his second tour, he reverted to his former enlisted status and became a member and then team leader (E-7) of the famous U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute demonstration team at Ft. Bragg, NC. On the morning of 8 March 1973, SFC Welch lost his life in the crash of the Golden Knights C-47 aircraft. Fred Funk, also a former member of the 281st AHC, recalls that he had been conversing with Frank at the Ft. Bragg Special Operations Hangar at Simmons Army Air Field on the morning the tragedy occurred. Fred relates that there were a total of four teams, 18 parachutists, loaded on the aircraft on their way to a three-day parachute demonstration. The C-47 took off disappearing into rain and fog in minimal flying conditions. Within the hour word was received that the aircraft had crashed near Silar City, NC. There were no survivors.
The cause of the crash was that it reportedly exceeded the weight and balance limits due to a heavy metal plating that was installed in the aircraft floor during Vietnam service. The heavy plating's weight was never logged into the weight and balance data for the aircraft. Michael Johnson, another 281st AHC member, also contributed to this memorial.

Tom West

DOD: 20 April 2007

Dear Family and Friends:
This is a very difficult letter that I could ever write and send to you.  My husband Tom West passed away last Friday,
April 20, 2007. For those of you who do not know, Tom suffered a very long time with heart disease and diabetes. Tom was a wonderful man who had been  a very active person, very much a people person, loved humor, camping, fishing, and golf. He loved his trip last summer through Canada and Alaska. Which he had hoped to be able to do again in June. Most of all Tom loved his family, friends and the many people that he met throughout his lifetime. You have All Enriched his life and I Thank You All for having been a part of his life. If you know of anyone that knew Tom, would you let them know, as there are many friends that I may have forgotten on this list.  I am not thinking very clearly right now, and would appreciate your help. Tom was a Disabled Veteran and wanted to be buried in the Tahoma National Cemetery. And there will be a Military Funeral Honors Service for Tom next Wednesday, May 2, at 1pm at the Tahoma National Cemetery in the Kent/Covington area that is bordering Maple Valley near Highway 18. All are Welcomed.
Thank you All.
, Tom JR, Jim, Dave and Kristin (Dave's Wife)
Tribute to Tom and Guest Book to Sign at: 

Peter E. Witting
13 Oct 1946
DOD: June 1981
Verified by the U.S. Consulate in Berlin Germany
From Ohio

CW3 Thomas H. Wingfield
CW3 Thomas H. Wingfield was from Albuquerque, NM.  Tom was an enlisted communication specialist assigned to the 499th Signal Detachment in Ft. Benning, GA when the 499th joined the 281st AHC to proceed to Vietnam. Prior to departing Ft. Benning Tom applied for a Warrant Officer appointment. Tom learned that his appointment to Warrant Officer was approved on November 7, 1966, coincidentally the day he and his wife Mary would celebrate their seventh wedding anniversary miles apart.  Tom served a second tour in Vietnam in Vinh Long in 1968.  He retired in 1979 as a CW3.  Tom passed away on August 21, 1992 as a result of lung cancer. He is survived by his wife Mary George Wingfield who contributed to this memorial.

Wood, Richard P.
DOD: 1996

205 Tresckow Road
McAdoo, PA 18237



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