Name: Daniel George Dawson
Rank/Branch: O2/US Army
Unit: 145th Aviation Battalion
Date of Birth: 23 July 1938 (San Luis Obispo CA)
Home City of Record: Ft. Bragg CA
Date of Loss: 06 November 1964
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 105912N 1064917E (XT921449)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Category: 2
Acft/Vehicle/Ground: O1F
REFNO: 0043
Other Personnel In Incident: ARVN observer (missing, name unknown)

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 October 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: The O1 "Bird Dog" was used extensively in the early years of the
war in Vietnam by forward air controllers and provided low, close visual
reconnaissance and target marking which enabled armed aircraft or ground
troops to close in on a target. The Bird Dog was feared by the enemy,
because he knew that opening fire would expose his location and invite
attack by fighter planes controlled by the slowly circling Bird Dog. The
Vietnamese became bold, however, when they felt their position was
compromised and attacked the little Bird Dog with a vengeance in order to
lessen the accuracy of the impending air strike.

On November 6, 1964, 1Lt. Daniel G. Dawson was the pilot of an O1F Bird Dog
aircraft flying a visual reconnaissance mission over Bien Hoa Province,
South Vietnam. His observer on the mission was an ARVN 2nd Lieutenant, whose
name is unknown.

The aircraft was not heard from after takeoff. Although search efforts were
made, they failed to turn up either the crashed aircraft or its crew. It is
not known whether or not Dawson and his observer survived. The estimated
location of the loss is listed as near the city of Bien Hoa.

Daniel G. Dawson was maintained in a status of missing in action, but was
ultimately declared dead, based on no specific information to indicate that
he was still alive.

In 1973, when agreements were signed ending American involvement in the
Vietnam War, 591 American prisoners were released. Dawson was not among
them. He is one of nearly 2500 Americans who did not return from Vietnam.

By 1989, over 10,000 reports have been received relating Americans missing,
prisoner or unaccounted for in Southeast Asia, and many experts are
convinced that hundreds of these missing men are still alive.

Whether Daniel Dawson survived to be captured is not known. It is certain,
however, that we have a moral and legal obligation to those who are alive to
bring them home.

Daniel G. Dawson was promoted to the rank of Captain during the period he
was maintained missing.

[note: Vietnam Helicopter Pilot's Association, October '94 describes
incident as "Official description: Died while missing not as a result of
hostile action, fixed wing air casualty - pilot."




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On November 6, 1964, an O-1F Bird Dog (tail number 57-2782) with two crew members departed Bien Hoa Air Force Base, South Vietnam, on a visual reconnaissance mission over Bien Hoa Province. The aircraft failed to return to base and was never heard from again. An extensive, three-day aerial search was conducted, but was unable to identify a crash site.

Captain Daniel George Dawson, who joined the U.S. Army from California, served with the 145th Aviation Battalion. He was the pilot of the Bird Dog when it disappeared on November 6, 1964, and his remains were not recovered. Following the incident, the Army posthumously promoted 1LT Daniel Dawson to the rank of Captain (CPT).  Today, Captain Dawson 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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