Name: John Russell Hills
Rank/Branch: O4/US Air Force
Unit: Unknown (per Air Force)
Date of Birth: 25 November 1925
Home City of Record: South Bend IN
Date of Loss: 14 February 1966
Country of Loss: Laos
Loss Coordinates: 152701N 1070048E (YC164071)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Category: 2
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: A1E
Refno: 0252
Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing)

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 April 1990 with the assistance
of 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 Douglas A1 Skyraider ("Spad") is a highly maneuverable,
propeller-driven aircraft designed as a multipurpose attack bomber or
utility aircraft. The H and J models were single seat aircraft, whereas the
E model generally carried two crewmen. The A1 was first used by the Air
Force in its Tactical Air Command to equip the first Air Commando Group
engaged in counterinsurgency operations in South Vietnam, and later used the
aircraft as escort for rescue units.

Maj. John R. Hills was the pilot of an A1E aircraft on an operational
mission in Laos when his aircraft crashed into the top of a hill in Saravane
Province about 5 miles northeast of the city of Chavane. The aircraft
exploded on impact, and Maj. Hills was believed to have died at that time.
No mention is made of a second crewman on this aircraft, although the E
model generally carried a co-pilot.

John Hills was declared Killed in Action, Body Not Recovered. He is among
over 2300 Americans still prisoner, missing or unaccounted for in Southeast

According to witnesses, John Hills is almost certainly dead. Tragically, his
family has no grave holding his body to visit. His remains are on enemy
soil, and not buried in his homeland. Even more tragically, evidence mounts
that hundreds of Americans are still alive, held captive in Southeast Asia.
What must they be thinking of us? What would John Hills think of us?





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Major John Russell Hills entered the U.S. Air Force from Indiana and was a member of the 1st Air Commando Squadron. On February 14, 1966, he was the pilot of a single-seat A-1E Skyraider (tail number 52-132665) on an armed reconnaissance mission over Laos. While strafing enemy ground targets, his aircraft crashed on a hill top in the vicinity of (GC) YC 164 071. It exploded and burned upon impact. Search and rescue efforts were conducted without success, and the hostile presence in the area prevented ground inspection of the crash site. Maj Hills remains unaccounted-for. Today, Major Hills 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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