McCLEARY, GEORGE CARLTON

The symbol on the Wall  next to George's name was changed from a cross (MIA)
to a star (KIA) April 30, 1994.  REMAINS RETURNED 07/81. ID'D  May 1991

Name: George Carlton McCleary
Rank/Branch: USAF, O5
Unit:
Date of Birth: 19 October 22
Home City of Record: Baton Rouge, LA
Date of Loss: 05 November 65
Country of Loss: North Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 210300N 1054300E
Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
Category: 3
Acft/Vehicle/Ground: F105 D
Refno: 0183

Other Personnel In Incident:

Source: Compiled by THE P.O.W. NETWORK 02 February 93 from the
following published sources - POW/MIA's -- Report of the Select Committee
on POW/MIA Affairs United States Senate -- January 13, 1993. "The Senate
Select Committee staff has prepared case summaries for the priority cases
that the Administration is now investigating. These provide the facts about
each case, describe the circumstances under which the individual was lost,
and detail the information learned since the date of loss.  Information in
the case summaries is limited to information from casualty files, does not
include any judgments by Committee staff, and attempts to relate essential
facts. The Committee acknowledges that POW/MIAs' primary next-of- kin know
their family members' cases in more comprehensive detail than summarized
here and recognizes the limitations that the report format imposes on these
summaries."

On November 5, 1965, Lieutenant Colonel McCleary was the pilot of an F-105,
the flight leader of a flight of four aircraft on a SAM suppression mission
over North Vietnam.  A surface to air missile was launched and exploded
approximately 20 feet from his aircraft. His aircraft burst into flames,
pitched nose up, and began shedding pieces.  The canopy was observed to
separate before the aircraft disappeared into overcast tail first but his
wingman couldn't determine if he was able to eject from the aircraft.  No
search and rescue mission was possible due to the extremely hostile ground
environment and Colonel McCleary was declared missing in action.

In 1968 a People's Army of Vietnam soldier provided information on U.S. POWs
at a Hanoi prison correlating to Hoa Lo Prison, also called the Hanoi
Hilton.  He identified a photograph of Colonel McCleary as similar to that
of an American at Hoa Lo Prison.  In 1977 the Defense Intelligence Agency
reversed its previous correlation and concluded the soldier's report was
erroneous.

In August 1972, DIA received a report about an F-105 shot down by a MIG-17
circa October 1966.  One good parachute was seen.  This report was placed in
Colonel McCleary's file.

Two returnees identified LTC McCleary as one of the men in a photograph of
U.S. POWs at the 1969 Christmas event staged for U.S. POWs.  DIA later
positively identified everyone at the event and concluded the returnee's
initial conclusions were a case of misidentification.

In November 1973, Colonel McCleary was declared dead/body not recovered,
based on a presumptive finding of death.  In July 1988, Vietnam turned over
remains at Hanoi which it stated were those of Colonel McCleary.  In May
1991 they were identified as his.