KROGMAN, ALVA RAY Name: Alva Ray Krogman Rank/Branch: O2/US Air Force Unit: Date of Birth: 12 April 1941 Home City of Record: Worland WY Date of Loss: 17 January 1967 Country of Loss: Laos Loss Coordinates: 170159N 1055758E (XD011815) Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered Category: 2 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: O1F Refno: 0572 Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 April 1990 with the assistance of 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 1998. REMARKS: SYNOPSIS: All tactical strike aircraft operating in Southeast Asia had to be under the control of a Forward Air Control (FAC), who was intimately familiar with the locale, the populous, and the tactical situation. The FAC would find the target, order up U.S. fighter/bombers from an airborne command and control center or ground based station, mark the target accurately with white phosphorus (Willy Pete) rockets, and control the operation throughout the time the planes remained on station. After the fighters had departed, the FAC stayed over the target to make a bomb damage assessment (BDA). The FAC also had to ensure that there were no attacks on civilians, a complex problem in a war where there were no front lines and any hamlet could suddenly become part of the combat zone. A FAC needed a fighter pilot's mentality, but but was obliged to fly slow and low in such unarmed and vulnerable aircraft as the Cessna O1 Bird Dog, and the Cessna O2. 1Lt. Alva R. Krogman was a FAC assigned a mission over Laos on January 17, 1967. At a point west of the DMZ in the extreme northern portion of Savannakhet Province, Laos, his aircraft was shot down. Krogman, who was believed to have died in the crash of the aircraft, was never found. Although he is listed as Killed, he is also counted among the missing because no remains were ever recovered to return home. Laos is often called the "Black Hole" of the POW issue because, of nearly 600 Americans lost there, not a single man was ever released that had been held in Laos. The Pathet Lao stated on several occasions that they held prisoners, yet we never negotiated for their freedom. These men were abandoned by the government for which they bravely fought. Since American involvement in the war in Southeast Asia ended, refugees have flooded the world, bringing with them stories of American soldiers still held prisoner in their homeland. Many authorities now believe that hundreds were left behind as living hostages. Alva R. Krogman apparently did not survive the events of January 17, 1967. His family has accepted that he is dead. They no longer expect him to come home someday. But hundreds of families wait expectantly and in the special agony only uncertainty can bring. Hundreds of men wait in caves, cages and prisons. How much longer will we allow the abandonment of our best men? It's time we brought them home.