HEMMEL, CLARENCE JOSEPH
Name: Clarence Joseph Hemmel
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Date of Birth: 30 November 1941
Home City of Record: Jefferson City MO
Date of Loss: 21 October 1967
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 153705N 1083010E (BT430280)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Other Personnel In Incident: (none 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: At the Air Force Academy, Clarence J. Hemmel was known as "Boo
Boo." He was well liked and expected to have a fine Air Force career
following his 1963 graduation.
After training on the F100 Super Sabre fighter/bomber, Hemmel was sent to
Vietnam. There, on October 21, 1967, his plane was kit by enemy fire,
crashed, and Hemmel was presumed to be dead. His last known location was due
east of the city of Tam Ky near the coastline of South Vietnam.
Hemmel probably did not survive that day in October, so it was
disappointment his family felt, not shock, when he did not miraculously
return with 591 released American prisoners in 1973. But military officials
were shocked that hundreds of Americans known or suspected to be prisoners
were not released.
Since the war ended, thousands of reports have been received by the U.S.
Government that relate to Americans still held captive in Southeast Asia.
The Government maintains that it cannot verify any single report, but the
official "assumption" is that at least some men are there. Experts maintain
there are hundreds, but the U.S. has not found the formula to bring them
Clarence Hemmel may not have survived, but some of the men he flew with did.
One can imagine that "Boo Boo" would gladly fly one more mission for them.
It's time we brought them home.