BLACK, PAUL VERNON Remains returned 12/06/95 ID 05/12/03 Burial 12/2003
Name: Paul Vernon Black Rank/Branch: W1/US Army Unit: 11th Aviation Group, 1st Cavalry Division Date of Birth: 26 April 1948 (Santa Cruz CA) Home City of Record: Central Valley CA Date of Loss: 01 March 1971 Country of Loss: Cambodia Loss Coordinates: 115940N 1055238E (WU955265) Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered Category: 2 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: UH1H [NSA states Eh-1H} Refno: 1712 Other Personnel in Incident: killed, none missing - see biography below
Source: Compiled 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 in 2003.
SYNOPSIS: On March 1, 1971, W1 Paul V. Black was the aircraft commander of a UH1H helicopter on a combat mission about 15 miles within Cambodia in Kampong Cham Province. During the mission, the aircraft received enemy ground fire, crashed and burned. The helicopter apparently lost its main rotor on impact with the ground. The vehicle exploded into a fireball. All the crew members were aboard the aircraft at the time, and none were seen to exit.
Subsequent recovery efforts recovered the remains of the pilot and passengers (no further identification available), but no trace could be found of W1 Black. Although he is thought to have perished in the crash of the aircraft, the U.S. believes that the enemy forces in the area probably know his fate.
Fifteen years after the war, the Cambodian (Kampuchean) government let it be known that they had the remains of nearly 100 Americans. Unfortunately, the U.S. has no diplomatic relations with Kampuchea and would not officially respond. Although several U.S. Congressmen have attempted to recover the remains of these Americans, the government of Kampuchea clearly wishes an official request from the U.S., which the U.S. Government is unwilling to give.
It is not thought that Americans captured by the Cambodian communists were allowed to survive, but were instead executed. As Vietnamese troops also coursed through Cambodia, as in Laos, however, a significant number of these downed pilots and crew might have been captured by the Vietnamese, thus escaping the post-war holocost caused by the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia.
The governments of Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and the United States have for nearly 20 years engaged in political pandering while reports mount that Americans are still alive in Southeast Asia. It's time we brought our men home.
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The official NSA website has identified Paul Vernon Black as flying an EH-1H LEFT BANK Helicopter as part of the Army Signals Agency when lost.
A portion reads:
A second LEFT BANK aircraft from the 1st Cav Division was lost on 1 March 1971 near Dambe, Cambodia (approximately five miles inside Cambodia). Those lost were:
WO1 Paul V. Black from Central Valley, California KIA/BNR
WO1 Robert D. Uhl from San Mateo, California DWM/BR
SP5 Gary C. David from Pottstown, Pennsylvania KIA
SP4 Frank A. Sablan from Phenix City, Alabama KIA
These mission crews on board the two LEFT BANK aircraft were assigned to the 371st Radio Research Company. Originally designated as the 371st ASA Company, it was formed by the United
States Army Security Agency in 1962 and was attached to the 1st Cavalry Division. It was with this division that the company saw wartime service in the Republic of Vietnam from 1966 to 1971. The mission of the 371st was to provide combat information to the division commander in pursuit of his tactical war-fighting mission. The company served well and faithfully, earning two Presidential Unit Citations, four Meritorious Unit Commendations, and one Valorous Unit Award. It was redeployed to Fort Hood wit the division in 1971 where it served with pride until deactivation in 1981. Its lineage and colors are now perpetuated by Company A, 312th MI Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas.
Page Updated: Saturday, September 13, 2003 9:10 AM PDT At long last, a son found
By Patti Richter, Staff Writer
PORT ORFORD - Jim and Jane Black will bury their 22-year-old son at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday. Paul Black is not a recent casualty of the United State's ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.....
===================== ARLINGTON, Va. 12/11/2003 Troops' Remains From Vietnam Era Buried
ARLINGTON, Va......About 50 mourners gathered under a drizzling rain with their hands over their hearts as a horse-drawn caisson carried the flag-draped casket. It contained the recently identified remains of Black, along with those from three other men who were on the Huey helicopter with him when it crashed and burned in Cambodia on March, 1, 1971....