ARMSTRONG, FRANK ALTON III Name: Frank Alton Armstrong III Rank/Branch: O4/US Air Force Unit: 1st Air Commando Squadron Date of Birth: 07 March 1930 Home City of Record: Shreveport LA Date of Loss: 06 October 1967 Country of Loss: Laos Loss Coordinates: 143757N 1072758E Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered Category: 2 Acft/Vehicle/Ground: A1E Refno: 0852 Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK 2009. REMARKS: SYNOPSIS: The Douglas A1 Skyraider ("Spad") is a highly maneuverable, propeller driven aircraft designed as a multipurpose attack bomber or utility aircraft. The E model generally carried two crewmen. The A1 was first used by the Air Force in its Tactical Air Command to equip the first Air Commando Group engaged in counterinsurgency operations in South Vietnam, and later used in a variety of roles, ranging from multi-seat electronic intelligence gathering to Navy antisubmarine warfare and rescue missions. The venerable fighter aircraft was retired in the spring of 1968 and had flown in more than twenty model variations, probably more than any other U.S. combat aircraft. Maj. Frank A. Armstrong III was the pilot of an A1E which was on an ordnance delivery mission on October 6, 1967. Armstrong's was the lead aircraft in a flight of two A1Es from the 1st Air Commando Squadron based at Pleiku, South Vietnam. Armstrong's aircraft was struck by hostile ground fire as the flight was in Attopeu Province, Laos, near the tri-border area of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. According to other flight members, Maj. Armstrong did not have time to parachute out of the aircraft as it crashed to the ground in an inverted position. Frank A. Armstrong is listed among the missing because his remains were never found to send home to the country he served. He died a tragically ironic death in the midst of war. But, for his family, the case seems clear that he died on that day. The fact that they have no body to bury with honor is not of great significance. For other who are missing, however, the evidence leads not to death, but to survival. Since the war ended, over 10,000 reports received relating to Americans still unaccounted for in Indochina have convinced experts that hundreds of men are still alive, waiting for their country to rescue them. The notion that Americans are dying without hope in the hands of a long-ago enemy belies the idea that we left Vietnam with honor. It also signals that tens of thousands of lost lives were a frivolous waste of our best men. ===========================
Subject: Bio of Maj Frank Alton Armstrong III
Date: Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:45:12 -0700
To whom it may concern
I am the wife of Major Frank Alton Armstrong III, an USAF pilot
He went to Viet Nam in early 1967, was shot down in late Spring of the same year and was wounded, was rescued, came home for a brief R&R, before returning to Viet Nam a couple of weeks later
He has been missing since October 6, 1967
My Father in Law, Lt Gen. Frank Alton Armstrong Jr. USAF, and I, were given several different versions as to WHERE, how and what has happened that day, by various Government Officials at that time, in the ensuing weeks and months and first few years.
One thing has been consistent and clear from the beginning, however, in all of the early official accounts, namely, that "They let him go in there ALONE!"
My Father in Law died of a broken heart because of all this in 1969
At some point, MANY years later, the records were revised at least once more, to say, that my Husband's plane actually went down in LAOS on that day, during the Secret War there. In this version, for the first time, the mysterious unnamed "wingman" is being mentioned who supposedly was an eye witness to the incident
Never mind, that no one has ever officially notified us, his family, of that fact!!!
The Bio of MAJ. Frank A Armstrong III also says that his Bio is also based in part on interviews with his family members
Well no one has interviewed me, his wife!!!!
Before my Husband left for Viet Nam, he gave me a Standard Power of Attorney drawn up by the Judge Advocate Office at Hurlburt Field AFB. That Power of Attorney directs me that should he become a Prisoner of War or Missing in Action, to find him and/or cause him to be found!!!!
I tried to do that and continue to try and do just that, EVERY DAY, to the best of my ability, in spite of some extreme hardships my family and I had to endure as a result, details of which are available but which I will not go into here at this point
Needless to say, as you can imagine, the past 40 yrs have been most difficult, and going on with our lives in a normal fashion has been all but impossible
In spite of everything, I wll never give up, never have and never will
We, the ( remaining) Family of Major Frank A Armstrong III, we do love him and we do care, want him to be brought home, are still waiting....for we know that the REAL TRUTH shall set us free
The book "AN ENORMOUS CRIME" by Bill Hendon and Elizabeth Stewart says it all!!!!
It IS a Definitive account of our ABANDONED Heroes!!!!
A.K.A. Vera Armstrong Cherry