Remains returned September 1987

Name: Michael Joseph Bosiljevac
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Unit: 17th Wild Weasels, 388th Tactical Fighter Wing, Korat RTAFB
Date of Birth: 09 October 1945
Home City of Record: Omaha NE
Date of Loss: 29 September 1972
Country of Loss: North Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 210200N 1052200E (WJ380256)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Status in 2003: Died in Captivity - See remarks below.
Category: 2
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: F105G
Refno: 1930
Other Personnel In Incident: James W. O'Neil (released POW)

Official pre-capture photo

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 April 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.


SYNOPSIS: Lt.Col. James W. O'Neil was the pilot and Capt. Michael J.
Bosiljevac the EWO (Electronic Warfare Officer) of an F105G jet fighter
which was shot down by a Soviet SAM (Surface to Air Missile) on September
29, 1972. Both Bosiljevac and O'Neil ejected successfully, and landed 23
miles southwest of Hanoi. Radio Hanoi/Moscow/Cuba reported the capture of
both "pilots" alive (FIBIS) on 29 September 1972. O'Neil was subsequently
transferred to Hoa Lo (the "Hanoi Hilton") and repatriated March 29, 1973.

Upon his release, O'Neil stated that he had observed Bosiljevac in the
parachute, and that Bosiljevac had manually cut the parachute risers for
control and deployed his survival kit for landing. On about the fifth day of
his confinement O'Neil asked an English-speaking turnkey about Bosiljevac.
The turnkey later returned and said, "He is alive, well, uninjured, and
luckier than you."

Repeated USG, as well as family, inquiries met with little response from the
DRV/SRV. In fact, the Socialists Republic of Vietnam (SRV) wrote to the
family of Mike Bosiljevac and claimed to have "no knowledge of Mr. Michael
Joseph Bosiljevac," and further stated that "they no longer hold prisoners
within Vietnam."

Yet, on September 21, 1987, the government of Vietnam provided Bosiljevac's
name and his remains were returned to USG control on September 24, 1987. The
Central Identification Laboratory in Hawaii (CILHI) released the remains for
a second opinion in January of 1988, and final identification occurred in
January 1988. Bosiljevac's remains were returned to Omaha, Nebraska for
burial on February 10, 1988.

On August 1, 1989, Mike Bosiljevac's records were corrected to reflect that
he Died in Captivity. While this correction does not define the total
duration of his captivity, it stands as a matter of record.

Michael J. Bosiljevac was promoted to the rank of Major as a posthumous

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 60 Minutes 60 Minutes Classics
Jul 28, 1974
Where is Mike Bosiljevac, Captain, U.S. Air Force? Is he dead?
prisoner of war of the North Vietnamese? A ...


We Can Keep You Forever (TV Movie 1988) - Full Cast & Crew - IMDb
Herself - Wife of MIA. Kay Bosiljevac ... Herself - Wife of MIA Mike Bosiljevac ...
Sammy Davis Jr. ... Himself - at POW Homecoming (archive footage) (uncredited).




Recently I contacted the Assistant Sec Def for POW/MIA and requested that
information that was incorrect about Major Michael Bosiljevac be corrected
to properly reflect that he died in Captivity.  I carefully prepared
irrefutable data to send, and courtesy copied Senator Lugar and Bayh, since
I live in Indiana now.

In the believe it or not category they changed it to reflect that he did die
in captivity.

A couple of years ago, the Moving Wall was at Offutt AFB, and they were
giving out information that he died in a "crash", and they said it was
information from DOD. At least one person told me that I had to be lying-wow
what a blow.

I never could get the Wall in D.C. to give me the courtesy of a reply, and
the Moving Wall-same. They just go by what they were given from DOD.

If you happen to know the name of the group that stands the watch at the
Wall in D.C., I would like to get it.

It will be interesting to see if the information is changed that they

Thanks as ever for the wonderful work that all of you do. God Bless.

Warm regards,

Kay Bosiljevac


Kelly: Memory of missing Vietnam soldier lives in Freedom Tree ...
May 24, 2014 - It's similar to the metal POW-MIA bracelets that were worn to ...
there for the tree-planting ceremony 40 years ago: Kay Bosiljevac Schneider, ...


ROTC students remember POW/MIA with run, vigil -
Sep 18, 2015 - "If they fall into the hands of an enemy, know that we will come," said 
Kay Bosiljevac
-Schneider, the wife of a prisoner of war. "Fifteen years was ..






Return to Service Member Profiles

On February 3, 1988, the Central Identification Laboratory-Hawaii (CILH, now DPAA) identified the remains of Major Michael Joseph Bosiljevac, missing from the Vietnam War.

Major Bosiljevac joined the U.S. Air Force from Nebraska and was a member of the 17th Wild Weasel Squadron. On September 29, 1972, he was the electronics warfare officer aboard an F-105G Thunderchief on a combat mission over enemy territory in Vietnam. Major Bosiljevac's aircraft was shot down by a surface-to-air missile over Hoa Binh Province. He ejected from the aircraft before it crashed, but died at some point following the incident. His remains could not be immediately recovered following his loss. In September 1987, the Vietnamese government returned a set of remains to U.S. custody that they associated with Maj Bosiljevac. Forensic analysis confirmed the identification in 1988.

Major Bosiljevac 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.