GUILLET, ANDRE ROLAND
Name: Andre Roland Guillet
Rank/Branch: E3/US Air Force
Date of Birth: 17 December 1943
Home City of Record: Waterbury CT
Date of Loss: 18 May 1966
Country of Loss: Laos
Loss Coordinates: 171500N 1061000E (XE256083)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Other Personnel In Incident: Lee D. Harley (missing)
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: Capt Lee D. Harley was the pilot and AM1 Andre Guillet was serving
as observer aboard an O1E aircraft which departed on May 18, 1966 for a
mission over Laos. While in Laos, west of the demilitarized zone and just
south of the famed Ban Karai Pass, the little spotter plane was shot down.
Air Force officials told the families that the plane burst into flames on
impact and the crew could not be recovered.
If this were all there was to the story, critics wonder, why did the Air
Force not declare the two men Killed/Body Not Recovered? A reasonable
assumption is that there exists no certainty that the two men were killed
when their plane went down, and the possibility exists that they could have
successfully bailed out before impact. Regardless, it is strongly suspected
that the Lao or the North Vietnamese know the fates of the crew of the O1E.
Guillet and Harley are two of nearly 600 Americans who were lost in Laos
during American involvement in the Vietnam War. U.S. presence in Laos was in
violation of Laos' neutrality guaranteed at Geneva by agreement of several
nations. But because the Vietnamese (and also the Chinese) were operating in
Laos as well, it was convenient for all parties concerned to "look the other
way." As a consequence, it would not have been appropriate to recognize the
communist government of Laos, the Pathet Lao, in a treaty to end the war -
since we were not at war with Laos - and the American prisoners the Pathet
Lao stated they held were abandoned.
As reports continue mount concerning Americans still missing in Southeast
Asia, many authorities are convinced that hundreds of them are still alive
today. One must wonder, are Guillet and Harley among them? If so, what must
they be thinking of the country they proudly served?
Andre R. Guillet was promoted to the rank of Senior Master Sergeant and Lee
D. Harley to the rank of Major during the period they were maintained