JEFFERSON, PERRY HENRY
Remains ID announced 12/18/2007
|Name: Perry Henry Jefferson
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Unit: 120th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 35th Tactical Fighter Wing
Date of Birth: 18 August 1931
Home City of Record: Denver CO
Date of Loss: 03 April 1969
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 114300N 1091200E (BP750005)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Other Personnel in Incident: Arthur G. Ecklund (missing)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 July 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.
SYNOPSIS: On April 3, 1969, U.S. Army 1Lt. Arthur G. Ecklund and his U.S.
Air Force observer, Capt. Perry H. Jefferson, were flying a visual
reconnaissance mission out of Phan Rang airbase. They left the base at 0700
hours in an O1G aircraft (serial #51-12078) and reported in by radio at 0730
hours giving their location, destination and information concerning a convoy
they were going to check out. No further communication was heard, except for
a signal "beeper".
Extensive search efforts began at 0950 hours with all available aircraft,
and continued for three days without success. The aircraft is believed to
have occurred in an area occupied by enemy forces, thus preventing a ground
On April 15, 1969, a Vietnamese source reported that he had been in contact
with a communist Montagnard who claimed the Viet Cong had shot down an
aircraft with two Americans in it, and the Americans had been wounded, but
were alive, and being held in captivity. He said the aircraft was shot down
between Phan Rang and Cam Ranh City. A later report indicated that two men
fitting the description of Ecklund and Jefferson were seen on a trail being
guarded by Viet Cong, and that they appeared to be in good health.
The U.S. Defense Department list Jefferson's loss coordinates near the
coastline of Vietnam, about 20 miles south of Cam Ranh, while Ecklund's loss
coordinates are listed about 10 miles southwest of Cam Ranh and about 15
miles northwest of those of Jefferson. Both men are listed as lost in Ninh
Thuan Province, South Vietnam.
The presence of the reports of captivity and the emergency radio "beeper"
lends weight to the fact that the two men were captured. There can be no
question that the Vietnamese know the fate of two men. As reports concerning
Americans still alive in Southeast Asia continue to flow in, it becomes
increasingly more important to find out what happened to the men we left
Air Force Officer Missing In Action From Vietnam War Is Identified
The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
He is Maj. Perry H. Jefferson, U.S. Air Force, of Denver, Colo. He will be buried April 3, 2008 in Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C.
On April 3, 1969, Jefferson was an aerial observer on board an O-1G Bird Dog aircraft on a visual reconnaissance mission over a mountainous region in Ninh Thuan Province, Vietnam. The pilot of the aircraft, then U.S. Army 1st Lt. Arthur G. Ecklund, radioed Phan Rang airbase to report his location, but contact was lost soon after. An extensive, three-day search and rescue effort began, but no evidence of a crash was found. Hostile threats in the area precluded further search efforts.
In 1984, a former member of the Vietnamese Air Force turned over to a U.S. official human remains that he said represented one of two U.S. pilots whose aircraft was shot down.
In 1994 a joint U.S./Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) team, led by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC), interviewed two Vietnamese citizens regarding the incident. The witnesses said the aircraft crashed on a mountainside, the pilots died and were buried at the site. They said two other men were sent to the site a few days later to bury the pilots. The team excavated the crash site described by the witnesses and found aircraft wreckage. No human remains were found.
In 2000, the remains turned over in 1984 were identified as Ecklund's.
In 2001, a Vietnamese national living in California turned over to U.S. officials human remains that he said were recovered at a site where two U.S. pilots crashed. These remains were identified in 2007 as Jefferson's.
Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used mitochondrial DNA and dental comparisons in identifying Jefferson's remains.
39 years later, a military burial
Article Last Updated: 04/03/2008 06:56:13 PM MDT
ARLINGTON, VA. — Thirty-nine years to the day from when he disappeared in Vietnam, Colorado's Maj. Perry Henry Jefferson today received a burial with full military honors. ...
Anne C. Mulkern: 202-662-8907 or firstname.lastname@example.org
always have questions’
Posted: Monday, April 07, 2008 8:34 AM
John Rutherford is an NBC News Producer based out of the Washington, D.C. bureau and is a decorated Vietnam veteran. He also posts stories on the military at www.dailynightly.msnbc.com (click on "John Rutherford" under "categories").