Accounted For  04/18/1996

Name: Burriss Nelson Begley
Rank/Branch: United States Air Force/O4
Unit: 421st Tactical Fighter Squadron.
Date of Birth:  06 November 1925
Home City of Record:  Hyden KY
Date of Loss: 5 December 1966
Country of Loss: North Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 213400 North  1050000 East
Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
Category: 2
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: F105D  # 4331
Other Personnel in Incident:
Refno:  0542

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, interviews and CACCF = Combined Action
Combat Casualty File. 2020






Remains Returned according to Pentagon 1997 list but..... DATE OF ID
STATED AS 01 DEC 93      (see last paragraph)


Returnee Stutz mentioned Begley in Debrief 123, according to Senator
Bob Smith.


EGRESS "Name scratched on floor at Ha Lo prison. (See Stutz debrief)
        - last known direct voice contact with Begley was during
        incident when Begley stated he was ejecting from his aircraft."


Senate Select Committee Final Report --

North Vietnam           Burris N. Begley

On December 5, 1966, Major Begley was the pilot of an F-105, one in
a flight of four aircraft on a combat mission over North Vietnam.
Their flight was attacked by hostile MIG-17 aircraft while en route
to the targets and Major Begley's aircraft was hit by hostile fire.
Another flight member observed his aircraft apparently hit in the
tail: debris and his drag chute were seen falling away from his F-

Major Begley reported he was losing power and altitude and would be
heading across the Red River.  He later reported he would be
ejecting, but aerial combat between the F-105 and MIG-17 aircraft
prevented U.S pilots from tracking Major Begley.  His aircraft
crashed in Phu Tho Province, south of the Red River, and
approximately 15 miles from the river town of Yen Bai.  There was
no chute observed and no radio or beeper signals. 

Major Begley was declared missing in action.  Returning U.S. POWs
had no information on his precise fate.  In April 1978 he was
declared killed in action, body not recovered, based on a
presumptive finding of death.

In November 1974, U.S. intelligence received a report from a
People's Army of Vietnam defector describing the shoot down of a
U.S. aircraft and the landing and capture of a pilot in Phu Ninh
District circa January 1967.  DIA concluded that this report might
correlate to one of three U.S. airmen lost in this area, one of
whom was Major Begley.  Another report from a former People's Army
soldier described the downing of a U.S. jet in Phu Tho Province
circa November 1966 and the source reported human remains at the
crash site.  This report was also placed on Major Begley's file.

In November 1986, Vietnam repatriated remains it asserted were
those of Major Begley.  U.S. officials determined that there were
insufficient remains for biological identification and they could
not be correlated to Major Begley.




Return to Service Member Profiles

On April 18, 1996, Joint Task Force-Full Accounting (JTF-FA, now DPAA) identified the remains of Colonel Burriss Nelson Begley, missing from the Vietnam War.

Colonel Begley, who joined the U.S. Air Force from Kentucky, served with the 421st Tactical Fighter Squadron. On December 5, 1966, he piloted an F-105D Thunderchief (serial number 62-4331) on a combat mission over North Vietnam. During the mission, the Thunderchief was shot down by enemy aircraft and Col Begley was killed. Hostile presence in the area prevented recovery efforts following the crash. In 1986, the Vietnamese government repatriated remains which were later identified as those of Col Begley.

Colonel Begley is memorialized on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.

If you are a family member of this serviceman, you may contact your casualty office representative to learn more about your service member.