SHARK, EARL ERIC

Name: Earl Eric Shark
Rank/Branch: E5/US Army
Unit: Company C, 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division
Date of Birth: 23 May 1946 (College Park MI)
Home City of Record: Pomona CA
Date of Loss: 12 September 1968
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 115314N 1063737E (XU772145)
Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
Category: 1
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground
Refno: 1277

Other Personnel in Incident: (none 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 2014.

REMARKS: 6809 DIC - ON PRG DIC LIST

SYNOPSIS: SGT Earl E. Shark was serving as pointman on a reconnaissance
enforce mission near Loc Ninh in Binh Long Province, South Vietnam on
September 12, 1968 when the point element came under enemy fire from a
superior enemy force.

According to a witness, Shark was wounded in his upper torso. His radio
operator was hit in the same burst of fire, but 5-10 meters behind Shark.
The platoon leader and his radio man went forward and tried to rescue the
two men, but were unable to get Shark out. The unit was forced to withdraw
and was unable to return to this location until two days later.

During the later search of the area, Shark was not found, but his helmet and
part of his canteen was found where he had last been seen. It was later
learned that Shark had been captured.

According to the Vietnamese, Shark died in captivity the same month he was
captured. Despite this, the Vietnamese have made no attempt to return his
remains to U.S. control.

In the fall of 1985, a CIA document was obtained by a private citizen
through the Freedom of Information Act which contained drawings of a Viet
Cong detention center which held U.S. servicemen prior to their being sent
north to Hanoi. It was located just 20 miles southwest of Camp Eagle, a
major American base near Hue, South Vietnam. In the document were greatly
detailed drawings, lists of personnel and lists of U.S. servicemen
identified from photographs. Earl E. Shark's name was on a list of
positively identified prisoners, as being held there AFTER September 1968.
Along with Shark were the names of several POWs who were released in 1973.
One of them has verified the authenticity of the report as far as the camp
itself is concerned.

Earl Shark's file contains a large amount of classified information (as of
1989). It is doubtful that his family was ever told of this report before it
became public in 1985. The Defense Department now maintains that the report
was a fabrication, even though much of it has been verified by returned POWs
who were held there. The reasoning is based in part that the source could
not know what he said he knew.

It has been 22 years since Earl E. Shark was captured, yet details contained
in his file remain classified. The U.S. Government would like for us to
believe their assessment of Shark's fate, yet they are unwilling for details
to be made public.

If, as the USG seems to believe, all missing Americans are now dead, why the
secrecy? If, as many authorities believe, hundreds of them are still alive,
why are they not home?

----------------------------------------------

                                                [0107-72.CM 03/01/96]

[NETWORK NOTE: This document was scanned and retyped to make it an ASCII file.
The Block format of a USG document was altered to just "text")


REPRODUCED AT THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES

DECLASSIFIED PER EXECUTIVE ORDER 12356, SECTION 3.3, NND PROJECT
NUMBER NN8937 597, BY  RB1VSW, DATE 1/23/96

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE INTELLIGENCE REPORT
Note: This Document contains information affecting the national defense of the
United States within the meaning of the espionage laws. Title 18, U.S.C., Sec
793 and 794. The transmission or revelation of its contents in any manner to an
unauthorized person is prohibited by law.

CONFIDENTIAL

This report contains unprocessed information. Plans and/or policies should not
be evolved or modified solely on the basis of this report.
    
1.  COUNTRY:  VS                       8. REPORT NUMBER: 6 029 0107 72

2.  SUBJECT: (U) US PW Sighting in     9. DATE OF REPORT: 30 Mar 72
             BINH LONG Province, VS                  (handwritten-W34130)

                                       10.NO. OF PAGES: 4

3. ISC NUMBER: 723.600                 11.REFERENCES: DIRM: 6G1, 6G3
                                                      SICR: D-7CX-49018


4. DATE OF INFORMATION: 15 Jul 69      12. ORIGINATOR: US Element, CMIC, USMACV
    
5. PLACE AND DATE OF ACQ: CMIC, SAIGON, VS
                          26 Feb 72
                                       13. PREPARED BY: JOHN P. MANNING
                                                         SP5, USA
6. EVALUATION: SOURCE F   INFORMATION  6
    
7. SOURCE: PW Interrogation            14. APPROVING AUTHORITY:  (SIGNED)
                                                      DAVID L. PE

 

May 25, 2014
Remembering the war's end for Sgt. Shark
The Advocate
I was 16 years old when I bought the POW/MIA bracelet in support of our troops. “Sgt. Earl E. Shark, Vietnam Prisoner of War-Missing in Action 9/12/68 ...
 
Editor's note: Liz Anderson still sometimes wears the POW bracelet, especially around Memorial Day, when America honors the men and women who ...