~*My 2nd POW/MIA*~
Charles Ronald Barnes
Unit:Command Aircraft Company,210th Aviation Battalion, 12th Aviation Group, 1st Aviation Brigade
Date of Birth:August 21 1942(Philadelphia Pa.)
Home City of Record:Fullerton PA
Date of Loss:March 16 1969
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates:161357N 1074448E (YC936965)
Status(in 1973) Missing in Action
Other Personnel in Incident: Raymond E. Bobe; Martin L. Foster; David R. Smith; Michael L. Batt (all missing)
Charles Barnes, co-pilot; David Smith,aircraft commander; and passengers, Batt, Foster, and Bobe, were aboard a U21A Aircraft lost in Tuan Thien Providence, South Vietnam. The U21 is a medium size aircraft, generally used for VIP or commutesrather than surveillance or combat missions.
The circumstances surrounding the loss of this crew and passengers are still completely classified as of 1989, although it is known that contact was lost with aircraft, and it is strongly believed that the enemy knew the fates of the crew and passengers. The last known location of the aircraft was about half-way between Hue and DaNang, South Vietnam.
Batts' photo was selected as a known prisoner from the JCRC photo album of those missing, but the US Government states that it is unknown why the source selected Batts' photo. Returning POWs did not indicate that any of the crew or passengers had been held with them in their prison system. When 591 Americans were released from Vietnamese prisons in 1973, high-ranking military officals were shocked that "hundreds" who were expected to be released were not.
Examination of intelligence reports suggest that there was more than one prison "system" in Vietnam. Those prisoners who were released were maintained in the same system. If the missing men aboard the U21A were captured and kept in another system, the POWs who returned would not know it.
Now, nearly 20 years later, men like these are all but forgotten, except by friends, family and fellow veterans. The U.S. "priorty" placed on determining their fates pale in comparison to the results it has achieved.
Since the U21A was lost, nearly 10,000 reports have been received by the U.S. relating to Americans still missing in Southeast Asia. Many authorities believe that hundreds remain alive, waiting for their country to come for them. Whether the men aboard the U21A are amoung them is not known. What is certain, however, is that we as a nation, are guilty of the abandonment of nearly 2500 of our best and courageous men. We cannot forget, and must do everything in our power to bring these men home.
Click onto banner below if you want to Adopt a POW/MIA
Yellow Ribbon Campaign
Yellow Ribbon Campaign