OLSON, JON JEFFREY
Name: Jon Jeffrey Olson
Rank/Branch: Captin/US Air Force
Unit: 97th Bombardment Wing
Age: 27
Home City of Record: Blytheville AR
Date of Loss: 03 February 1991
Country of Loss: Indian Ocean
Loss Coordinates:
Status: Killed/Body Not Recovered
Acft/Vehicle/Ground: B52
Other Personnel in Incident: Jorge I. Arteaga (missing); Eric D. Hedeen
(remains recovered)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project  09 March 1991 from one or more of
the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence
with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Copyright 1991
Homecoming II Project.
REMARKS: OPERATION DESERT SHIELD
SYNOPSIS: The Boeing B52 Stratofortress first saw combat action in Vietnam
in 1965. The numerous B52 missions in Southeast Asia, code-named Arc Light,
were considered a vital part of the air war. The external and internal bomb
load of the aircraft (roughly 75,000 pounds combined) made the bomber a
formidable war plane which could be highly destructive, yet also capable of
extreme precision. Seventeen of the aircraft were lost to enemy fire in
Southeast Asia, and twelve from other causes.
In 1991, hostilities in the Middle East again called the B52 into action. On
February 3, a B52 crashed about 2,500 miles east of Saudi Arabia over the
Indian Ocean. The aircraft, carrying six crew members, was returning to
Diego Garcia Air Base from a mission over Iraq. The crew was from the 97th
Bombardment Wing on temporary duty assignment from Eaker Air Force Base.
Three crew members were rescued from the water, but three - Arteaga, Hedeen
and Olson - remained missing. The aircraft was returning from a night of the
most intense bombing for Air Force B-52s to date in the war. There was no
indication that the aircraft had been damaged in battle, and mechanical
difficulties were blamed for the crash.
Some time later, Eric Hedeen's body was found in an inflated life raft and
recovered. He was buried with full military honors on February 12 in
Wenatcheee, Washington. Hedeen had been the electronics warfare officer
onboar the aircraft.
Jon J. Olson was the navigator of the aircraft. His father, retired LtCol.
Norris Olson of Fargo, North Dakota, and his brother, Marc Olson of Minot
Air Force Base, are both B52 pilots.
Jorge I. Arteaga's father is a United Nations liaison to Bolivia. Artiega
had been married less than 24 hours before shipping out to the Middle East.
As of May 1997, Jon Olson is still listed as Missing in Action.