HUNTER, GUY L. JR.
Name: Guy L. Hunter, Jr. Rank/Branch: CWO/US Marine Corps Unit: VMO2 Age: 46 Home City of Record: Camp Pendleton CA Date of Loss: 18 January 1991 Country of Loss: Kuwait Loss Coordinates: Status: Released Prisoner of War 03/05/91 Acft/Vehicle/Ground: OV10
Other Personnel in Incident: Clifford M. Acree (released)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 09 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, published sources, interviews. Update 2002 POW NETWORK.
REMARKS: OPERATION DESERT STORM
SYNOPSIS: The OV10 Bronco was among the aircraft most feared by the Viet Cong and NVA forces during the Vietnam war, because whenever the Bronco appeared overhead, an air strike seemed certain to follow. Although the glassed-in cabin could become uncomfortably warm, it provided splendid visibility. The two-man crew had armor protection and could use machine guns and bombs to attack, as well as rockets to mark targets for fighter bombers. This versatility enabled the plane to fly armed reconnaissance missions, in addition to serving as vehicle for forward air controllers.
LtCol. Clifford Acree and Chief Warrant Officer Guy L. Hunter, Jr. were the crew of an OV10 Bronco in the Middle East when U.S. air forces were again called into action in January 1991. The two were assigned to Marine squadron VM02, of which Acree was the commander. Acree was the pilot of the aircraft during the mission while Hunter was the observation officer. It was Hunter's first combat mission in the Middle East, although he had already earned the Navy Commendation Medal in the Persian Gulf. During the first wave of offensive strikes against Iraqi military targets, the reconnaissance aircraft was downed by a surface-to-air missile (SAM) and both Acree and Hunter were captured by Iraqi forces. Their location has been variously reported as southern Kuwait or Iraq, but recent interviews with the wives of Hunter and Acree indicate that the location was in Kuwait.
On January 20, 1991, Hunter and Acree appeared on Iraqi television in an apparent propaganda effort by their Iraqi captors. First the voice interviews, followed by the videotapes were released by Cable News Network (CNN). Hunter and Acree appeared to be speaking under extreme duress. Also on January 20, the Iraqis stated that their POWs would be used as "human shields" to protect their important military targets from strikes by Allied forces.
On March 6, 1991, Hunter and Acree were released by the Iraqis. Although the military personnel released have said very little publicly, some have stated that they were well-treated. Most of the POWs were held near an intelligence complex at Basra.
Guy Hunter is married and has three children, ages 12, 9 and 7. His wife, Mary, resides in Camp Pendleton, California. The Hunter family had moved from North Carolina to California in early January. Hunter was a Vietnam veteran, having served four tours in Southeast Asia. Hunter's brothers and wife felt confident he will "persevere" because of his dedication to his country and his extraordinary training and experience. His wife appeared on national television following his release stating that he was in good spirits and couldn't wait to come home.