GRANGER, PAUL LOUIS

Name: Paul Louis Granger
Rank/Branch: O1/US Air Force, co-pilot
Unit: 307th Strategic Wing, Utapoa AF TH
Date of Birth: 8 March 1948
Home City of Record: San Francisco CA
Date of Loss: 20 December 1972
Country of Loss: North Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 210500N 1055900E (WJ869477)
Status (in 1973): Released POW
Category:
Acft/Vehicle/Ground: B52D

Other Personnel In Incident: Thomas J. Klomann (released POW); Arthur V.
McLaughlin; Irwin S. Lerner; Randolph A. Perry Jr.; John F. Stuart (all
missing); from a B52G at WJ692313: William Y. Arcuri; Terry M. Geloneck; Roy
Madden Jr.; Michael R. Martini (all released POWs); Craig A. Paul; Warren R.
Spencer (both remains returned)

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 May 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. 2023

REMARKS: 730329 RELSD BY DRV

SYNOPSIS: Frustrated by problems in negotiating a peace settlement, and
pressured by a Congress and public wanting an immediate end to American
involvement in Vietnam, President Nixon ordered the most concentrated air
offensive of the war, known as Linebacker II, in December 1972. During the
offensive, sometimes called the "Christmas bombings," 40,000 tons of bombs
were dropped, primarily over military targets in the area between Hanoi and
Haiphong. White House Press Secretary Ronald Ziegler said that the bombing
would end only when all U.S. POWs were released and an internationally
recognized cease-fire was in force.

The Christmas Bombings, despite press accounts to the contrary, were of the
most precise the world had seen. Pilots involved in the immense series of
strikes generally agree that the strikes against anti-aircraft and strategic
targets was so successful that the U.S., had it wished, "could have taken
the entire country of Vietnam by inserting an average Boy Scout troop in
Hanoi and marching them southward."

The operation had its costs, however, in loss of aircraft and personnel.
During the month of December 1972, 62 crewmembers of B52 aircraft were shot
down and captured or went missing. Of these 62, 33 men were released in
1973. The remains of roughly a dozen more have been returned over the years,
and the rest are still missing. At least 10 those missing survived to eject
safely. Yet they did not return at the end of the war.

On December 20, 1972, three B52 aircraft departed Utapao Airbase, Thailand
for a bombing mission over Hanoi. During the mission, two of the three
aircraft were shot down by surface-to-air missiles (SAM). One of the
aircraft, a B52G, contained the following crewmembers: Capt. Warren R.
Spencer; Capt. Craig A. Paul; Capt. Terry M. Geloneck; 1LT William Y.
Arcuri; 1LT Michael R. Martini; and SSgt. Roy Madden, Jr. SSgt. Madden was
the gunner on this aircraft.

The number three aircraft in the flight, a B52D, contained the following
crew members:
Major John F. Stewart, pilot;
Major Randolph A. Perry,  R/Nav;
Capt. Thomas J. Klomann, Nav;
Capt. Irwin S. Lerner, EWO;
1Lt. Paul L. Granger, Co-Pilot; and
Chief Master Sgt. Arthur V. McLaughlin, Jr., Gunner.

These two B52 crews met varied fates. On the first aircraft, all but Paul
and Spencer were captured and released in 1973. Madden, Martini, Arcuri and
Geloneck were all injured; Madden sufficiently that he was brought home on a
litter. The remains of Paul and Spencer were returned by the Vietnamese on
September 30, 1977, despite earlier denials that the Vietnamese knew
anything about the two.

From the second aircraft, only two men were captured and released -- Granger
and Klomann. Klomann was sufficiently injured that it was necessary to bring
him off the Freedom bird on a litter.

From the two aircraft, Lerner, McLaughlin, Perry and Stuart remain
unaccounted for. The U.S. believes there is ample reason to suspect the
Vietnamese could account for these men, yet the Vietnamese deny any
knowledge of them.

One thing that amazed analysts about the B52 bombers that were shot down
over Hanoi during this period was the high survival rate of the crewmembers.
Many more were returned as POWs than was expected. The B52s that were shot
down were downed in extremely hostile territory with little or no chance of
rescue. However, they were fortunate to be captured during a period in which
little or no harassment and torture was being experienced by American POWs.
In fact, the Vietnamese were, during this time, "fattening them up" for what
they believed was to be their imminent release.

Unfortunately, it does not appear that all the prisoners were returned in
1973 at the end of the war. Since the end of the war, thousands of reports
have been received by the U.S. Government relating to Americans still alive
in captivity. Experts in the U.S. Government have stated they believe
Americans are still being held prisoner in Southeast Asia. The question
then, is no longer whether or not they are alive, but who are they, and how
can we bring them home?

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Paul Granger resides in California.
 

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