PAGE JASPER N.
|Name: Jasper N. Page
Rank/Branch: E6/United States Air Force
Unit: 3415 CIV ENG
Date of Birth:
Home City of Record: Hattiesburg MS
Date of Loss: 31 October 1965
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 103950 North 10702000 East
Status (in 1973): Escapee
Other Personnel in Incident: Charles Dusing, Thomas Moore,
Samuel Adams, all
Prisoners of War
Source: Compiled by P.O.W. NETWORK from one or more of the following: raw
data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA
families, published sources, personal interview with Jasper Page. 2018
REMARKS: 651104 ESCAPED
SYNOPSIS: On October 31, 1965, four U.S. Air Force personnel were captured
while traveling by truck from Vung Tau to Saigon. This incident occurred on
Route 15 at grid coordinates YS224805, just on the border of Binh Hoa and Gia
Dinh Province of South Vietnam. The individuals involved in this incident
are SSgt. Samuel Adams, SSgt. Charles Dusing, TSgt. Thomas Moore and
TSgt. Jasper Page.
On November 2, 1965, while being taken to a detention camp, Jasper Page,
managed to escape and return to U.S. control. He was the first captured
serviceman to return to U.S. control from South Vietnam. It was reported
that Samuel Adams had been shot during the same escape that freed Page, but
a defector identified Adams' photo as a prisoner at a later date. CIA's
analysis of this identification has been inconclusive. The names of all
three appeared on the died in captivity list furnished by the Provisional
Revolutionary Government (PRG) in 1973 at the Paris Peace Accords. The list
reflected that they had died during December 1965, but no details were
When 591 Americans were released at the end of the war in 1973, Adams, Dusing
and Moore were not among them; their names were on a list. No bodies were
returned to their families, even though the Vietnamese clearly know where to
find the three men. Since that time, Vietnam has doled out handfuls of remains
as the political atmosphere seemed appropriate, but Adams, Dusing and Moore
remain unaccounted for.
The three are among nearly 2500 Americans who remain missing in Indochina.
Unlike "MIA's" from other wars, most of these men can be accounted for.
Tragically, over 8000 reports concerning Americans still in Southeast Asia have
been received by the U.S. since the end of the war. Experts say that the
evidence is overwhelming that Americans were left behind in enemy hands. It's
time we brought our men home.
Jasper Page retired from the United States Air Force as a Sergeant. He and
his wife reside in Colorado.
Oct 09 1998
Library of Congress MicroFish reel #214
Jasper N. Page escaped in South Vietnam
On October 31, 1965, four U.S. Air Force personnel were captured while
traveling by truck Vung Tau to Saigon. This incident occurred on Route 15,
just on the border of Binh Hoa and Gia Dinh Provinces of South Vietnam. The
individuals involved in this incident are SSgt. Samuel Adams, SSgt. Charles
Dusing, TSgt. Thomas Moore and Jasper N. Page.
On November 2, 1965, while being taken to a detention camp, one of the
four POWs managed to escape and return to U.S. control. It was reported that
Samuel Adams had been shot during the same escape that freed the fourth
American prisoner, but a defector identified Adams' photo as a prisoner at a
later date. CIA's analysis of this identification has been inconclusive. The
names of all three appeared on the died in captivity list furnished by the
Provisional Revolutionary Government (PRG) in 1973 at the Paris Peace
Accords. The list reflected that they had died during December 1965, but no
details were given.
On Feb 5th, 98 I received a phone call from Jasper N. Page. We talked
about the happenings of those few days. SSgt Jasper N. Page, SSgt. Samuel
Adams, SSgt. Charles Dusing and TSgt. Thomas Moore all, USAF personnel
assigned 6250 Civil Engineering, Tan Son Nhut Air Base, RVN, departed Tan
Son Nhut Air Base at approximately 0900 hrs, 30 Oct 1965, on board an Army
HU 1B helicopter for Vang Tau beach area for a weekend of swimming. They
arrived at approx. 1000 hrs that day, the aircraft was to return the next
day to transport them back to base. They rented a beach cottage and spent
the reminder of the day and the next morning swimming and lying around the
beach sunning them selves. In the early afternoon hrs, Adams placed a phone
call to the Tan Son Nhut Air Base to confirm their flight back. He was told
that aircraft wouldn't be there to pick them up. He returned to the others
and told them about the aircraft not coming to pick them up. They began to
think of a way to get back Saigon. They were strolling along the beach area
where they passed a girl, who appeared to be caucasian who they thought to
be French. She was approx. 18-21 years old, medium build with light brown
hair. She was lying under a canopy of some sort with an elderly lady who was
around 55-60 years old, tall and invited the airmen to share some shade of
the canopy with the two ladies. After accepted and a conversation ensued
during which her sister was an exchange student in the US. She also stated
she worked in a French bank in Saigon. A short while later approx. four or
five children, two young men approx. 19-22 years old, and another French
looking girl of the same age and a Vietnamese joined them. At this time the
airmen inquired as to their mode of transportation and if they could drive
them to Saigon. The original young girl informed them that they were not
going to Saigon until later. After more conversation the elderly lady told
the airmen that she would permit her driver to take them to Saigon, but the
rest of them would get off at a small plantation just outside of Vung Tau
where they were staying.
Around 1630 hrs the airmen and the others boarded a yellow 1961 Econoline
Ford panel truck with a Shell Oil Co. logo on the side, and the Vietnamese
male who was the driver drove them to a Shell station near Vung Tau. They
picked up a automobile tire and proceeded North on Hwy 15. When they reached
the plantation all but the driver and the four airmen got out. Page
described the plantation as small with archway for an entrance and fairly
large house that was situated off the road a bit. They continued North on
Hwy 15, they slowed almost to a stop at a couple points along the way and
each time the driver would motion them to get down, but each time they would
continue on with out incident. At approx. 1730 hrs. they reached a point
where the truck slowed down again and the driver again motioned them to get
down. Suddenly the truck came to a stop and all the doors of the truck were
opened and several VC ordered the four USAF personnel and the driver out of
the truck. The airmen were searched and all there personal items taken from
them. The airmen were armed with a 22 cal., 38 cal and two 45-cal. pistols.
These were also taken from them. The VC tied the airmen in pairs with a rope
and ordered them back into the truck. Page remembered that the VC was
talking to the driver but Page doesn't know what happened to him. Adams and
Page were tired together and Dusing and Moore were tied together. A VC drove
the truck off on a dirt road until it became bogged down in the mud. The VC
then ordered the airmen out of the truck and was led off into a
northeasterly direction on foot, guarded by approx. 15 VC. Sunday night Oct
31st, 1965, they reached a small camp area, which consisted of small bamboo
shelters where they spent that night. While sleeping the airmen were tied to
bamboo bunks and anchored by rope to a post or pole and guarded by an
unknown number of VC. At this time Moore was given some pills for an upset
stomach which seemed to relieve him. Monday morning, Nov. 1st. 1965, along
with 15 VC guards, they continued on foot in the same northeasterly
direction until they arrived at a second camp similar to the first one they
where at. Here 25 - 30 VC guards replaced the original VC guards. Next
morning still heading in the same general direction as the past two days.
This was Tuesday Nov. 2nd. 1965, Dusing developed an upset stomach as Moore
did before him, he also was weak from lack of water. En route that day a
hard rain begin and at approx. 1530 hrs the VC grouped the men together and
put rain gear on them. Page and Adams were still bound together and were
guarded by three VC. Page believed that Dusing and Moore were about 500
yards behind on the trail moving their way. The VC guards stopped them at
this point to wait for the others, one of the VC guards leaned his weapon
against tree and dropped his guide rope connected to Page/Adams. Page/Adams
were able to free themselves from the rope under cover of their rain gear,
and briefly talked about an escape attempt. Adams was to go for the weapon
against the tree. Page was to jump the other two guards in an attempt to
disarm them. The moment had come for this attempt, Page succeed in knocking
one of the guards to the ground and get the others guards weapon, a French
carbine and a US M1 carbine. Page tossed the French weapon away, as he did
not know how to operate it. At this point, he noticed Adams had not
succeeded in getting the weapon leaning against the tree. The VC guard had
reached the weapon prior to Adams. One guard turned and fired at Page as
Page fled into the brush. Page does not know if the VC guard fired at him or
not. He noticed that after Adams failed to reach the weapon in time he
started running on a nearby trail while the VC were firing at Adams. Page
aimed at the guard firing at Adams but he could not get the US carbine to
fire as the safety was on, he later learned when he had time to check it
out. Adams was approx. 15-20 yards from the VC when they were firing at him.
Page heard Adams shout "No" and saw him fall into a bush very close to him.
Then he heard more shots. Page believed that the VC guards killed Adams, but
he wasn't sure of this fact.
Page tried to get his weapon to fire again, with out success. The VC then
turned his weapon and pointed it at Page at point blank range. He turned and
ran four or five steps up the trail and then turned left in to the brush.
The VC fired again. Page said he thought it was in Adams' direction. Page
kept pushing himself through the brush for maybe five or ten minutes. Then
he lay down and kept still. At about this time he heard shouting and not in
English. Then more shots coming from the direction where he escaped. He
moved further into the brush and in a few minutes heard five or six more
shots ring out. It soon started to get dark and he decided to head in what
he thought was a southerly direction. After traveling for several hours he
came upon a swampy area that he was afraid to cross in the dark, so he spent
the night where he was. The next morning, 3 Nov. 1965, he moved down a
stream and eventually saw a rubber plantation on the other side. This was
about 1130 hrs and he could see some people across from him so he hid where
he was. About noontime, they left and went into some huts nearby. There was
quite a bit of activity in the area so he stayed where he was until dark. He
then followed a trail most of the night in a westerly direction and stopped
when the trail came to a dead end and spent the night there. At daybreak, 4
Nov. 1965 he picked up another trail and still going west came to an ox cart
track and followed it a while and then took another trail. This soon led him
to the Tam An Special Forces Camp on Nov. 4th, 1965 where he was examined by
a medic and then flown to Tan Son Nhut Air Base.
Here is what he said about his arrival at the camp. "I walked up to the
perimeter of the camp without and one seeing me. I saw four RVN on guard
duty. One turn in my direction and yield, he and the others dropped to the
ground pointing their weapons at me. After several days of running through
the jungle I was dirty, my cloths where torn and I had several days growth
on my face. I had already tied a white hankie to the barrel of the carbine
before I stepped out in to the open. Surrounded by RVN troops he waited for
someone to report to. I held my hands and the carbine above my head waving
the white flag. I felt that they where close to shooting me. It was not what
I wanted to happen after escaping and surviving. Eventually a US Special
Forces Major and an RVN Captain drove to his location and once finding out
who he was took him back to the camp for medical treatment and debriefing.
They spent several days flying over the area Page pin pointed on a map, but
nothing was visible from the air.
Page states that he last saw all the airmen at approx. 1530 hrs 2 Nov.
1965. At this time Moore, Dusing where detained by the VC and Adams was
attempting to escape. When 591 Americans were released at the end of the war
in 1973, Adams, Dusing and Moore were not among them; their names were on a
list. No bodies were returned to their families, even though the Vietnamese
clearly know where to find the three men. Since that time, Vietnam has doled
out handfuls of remains as the political atmosphere seemed appropriate, but
Adams, Dusing and Moore remain unaccounted for.
In November of 2001, in Branson, MO at the Annual Military Gala & Banquet, TSgt
Jasper Page FINALLY received his POW Medal. Doing the honors was Medal of Honor
recipient, Col "Bud" Day. The evening was hosted by the POW NETWORK, aboard the
Showboat Branson Belle. Several other former POWs were present for the event.
Page had escaped 36 years earlier, Nov 2, 1965.
Jasper Page passed away March 23, 2016.