BOOTH, GARY PRESTON
Name: Gary Preston Booth
Rank/Branch: E4/US Army
Unit: 18th Aviation Company, 223rd Aviation Battalion, 1st Aviation Brigade
Date of Birth: 11 April 1950 (Chehalif WA)
Home City of Record: Olympia WA
Date of Loss: 23 December 1970
Country of Loss: South Vietnam/Over Water
Loss Coordinates: 125821N 1092507E (CQ285345)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Other Personnel in Incident: Michael W. McAndrews; Bain W. Wiseman (missing)
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 2020.
REMARKS: A/C BROKE UP - SAR NEG - J
SYNOPSIS: On December 23, 1970, WO1 Michael W. McAndrews, aircraft
commander; WO1 Bain W. Wiseman, pilot; and SP4 Gary P. Booth, crew chief,
were flying a U1A "Otter" aircraft (tail number 55-3298), call sign Reliable
298, on a courier mission over South Vietnam.
At 1845 hours, trained observers on the ground reported seeing an aircraft,
later determined to be Reliable 298, break up in mid-air about 10 miles
south of Tuy Hoa Air Base. Information indicates that Reliable 298 may have
been on fire at the time it broke up. The observers reported that the
aircraft broke into two parts, and that these parts crashed in the vicinity.
U.S. Army helicopters arrived shortly after the incident and began an
unsuccessful search for survivors. Aerial searches the next day were
supplimented by ground searches along the nearby beaches. While parts of the
aircraft and individual flight equipment were found along the beach, no
trace was found of survivors.
It was the opinion of the U.S. Army that the crew of Reliable 298 died when
it went down on December 23, 1970. Because no remains were found, all the
crew was listed among the nearly 2500 Americans missing from the Vietnam
For others who are missing, determination of death is not possible. Some of
the missing were last seen being led away by enemy troops. A few wrote home
from POW camps, but were not released at the end of the war. Others were in
radio contact with search and rescue teams and advised them of their
Since the war ended, thousands of reports have accumulated indicating that
hundreds of Americans are still alive, captives of our long-ago enemy. While
the crew of Reliable 298 may not be among them, their deaths have little
meaning until this war is completely ended - and all Americans come home.