HYNDS, WALLACE GOURLEY JR.
Name: Wallace Gourley Hynds Jr. Rank/Branch: O6/US Air Force Unit: 11th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron/Udorn Date of Birth: 28 May 1925 Home City of Record: Sumter SC Date of Loss: 02 August 1967 Country of Loss: North Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 183115N 1052451E (WF405462) Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered Category: 3 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: RF4C Refno: 0782 Other Personnel in Incident: Carey A. Cunningham (missing)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 September 1990 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 2006.
SYNOPSIS: Col. Wallace G. Hynds was the pilot and Capt. Carey A. Cunningham the radar navigator of an RF4C reconnaissance version of the Phantom fighter/bomber. The two were assigned to the 10th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron.
On August 2, 1967, Hynds and Cunningham were flying the lead plane in a flight of two aircraft on a reconnaissance mission near the city of Vinh in North Vietnam. The number two aircraft observed Hynds' aircraft to crash to the ground and explode. No parachutes were heard, and no emergency beeper signals were heard. Based on their visual observation, the two men were declared killed.
The U.S. Government believes the Vietnamese could account for Hynds and Cunningham, primarily because the area was relatively heavily populated and there were enemy forces present. However, the Vietnamese have denied any knowledge of either Hynds or Cunningham.
Hynds and Cunningham are listed among the missing because their bodies were never recovered. Others who are missing do not have such clear-cut cases. Some were known captives; some were photographed as they were led by their guards. Some were in radio contact with search teams, while others simply disappeared.
Since the war ended, over 250,000 interviews have been conducted with those who claim to know about Americans still alive in Southeast Asia, and several million documents have been studied. U.S. Government experts cannot seem to agree whether Americans are there alive or not. Detractors say it would be far too politically difficult to bring the men they believe to be alive home, and the U.S. is content to negotiate for remains.
Well over 1000 first-hand, eye-witness reports of American prisoners still alive in Southeast Asia have been received by 1990. Most of them are still classified. If, as the U.S. seems to believe, the men are all dead, why the secrecy after so many years? If the men are alive, why are they not home?