Name: Charles Leroy Adkins
Rank/Branch: E4/US Army
Unit: B Troop, 1st Squad, 9th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division
Date of Birth: 28 May 1947 (Bethesda OH)
Home City of Record: Barnsville OH
Date of Loss: 02 February 1968
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 161209N 1081006E (AT960937)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 4
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: UH1H
Refno: 1024

Other Personnel In Incident: Kenneth J. Patton; Joe H. Pringle; Joseph Puggi;
Donald Burnham (all missing)

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 June 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.  2020


SYNOPSIS: Donald Burnham was the pilot of a UH1H helicopter (#66-16442) that
departed Camp Evans, Quang Tri, Republic of Vietnam for Chu Lai, Republic of
Vietnam on February 2, 1968. Also aboard were SP4 Charles Adkins, SFC Joe
Pringle, SSgt Joseph Puggi, passengers; and SP4 Kenneth Patton, crewchief.
The personnel aboard the aircraft were all members of B Troop, 1st Squad,
9th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division.

During a ground radar-controlled approach to Da Nang Airbase, the controller
lost radio contact with the helicopter and subsequently lost radar contact.
The last positive position of the aircraft was 12 miles north of Da Nang.

After attempts to contact Captain Burnham by radio failed, ramp checks were
conducted by another pilot from his unit. Search of the area to the north of
Da Nang failed to locate the missing aircraft.

On May 28, 1968, a crashed and burned UH1H helicopter (tail #6442) was
located in the appropriate vicinity and a search party recovered an ID tag
belonging to SFC Pringle, several weapons, and some human bones. The ID tag
and weapons were given to an unidentified major; subsequent attempts to
trace the weapons have been unsuccessful.

All human remains were given to the U.S. Army Mortuary at Da Nang, and were
subsequently determined unidentifiable. Search attempts terminated on
November 16, 1972. Because of the density of the underbrush, no attempt to
recover further remains was made. The crash site was photographed in July
1974, at which time it became known that parts of the aircraft had been
recovered by a Vietnamese woodcutter. No evidence of human remains were
found in the area.

Donald Burnham's photograph was identified by a Vietnamese rallier as having
been a prisoner of war. CIA analysis failed to determine why Burnham's photo
was selected, as neither he nor the other crew were seen by returned POWs.

As long as there is evidence that even one is alive, the possibility exists that any of the
crew of the UH1H lost on February 2, 1968 could be alive.




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On February 2, 1968, a UH-1H Iroquois (tail number 66-16442) carrying three passengers and two crew members was making a ground radar controlled approach to Da Nang Air Base when the ground controller suddenly and unexpectedly lost radio and radar contact with the aircraft. The entire crew was lost along with the helicopter. Several months later in May 1968, the aircraft was discovered to have crashed in a heavily-wooded gully with dense underbrush. Some remains were recovered but could not be identified as any of the crew members. Subsequent efforts to locate the crew's remains have been unsuccessful.

Specialist 4 Charles Leroy Adkins entered the U.S. Army from Ohio and served in Troop B, 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division. He was a passenger aboard the helicopter when it crashed and his remains were not recovered. Following the incident, the Army promoted SP4 Adkins to the rank of Sergeant First Class (SFC). Today, Sergeant First Class Adkins is memorialized on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. 

Based on all information available, DPAA assessed the individual's case to be in the analytical category of Active Pursuit.

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