OLSON, BARRY ALLEN Name: Barry Allen Olson Rank/Branch: E3/US Army Unit: B Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry, 4th Infantry Division Date of Birth: 04 August 1947 Home City of Record: Albert Lea MN Date of Loss: 26 September 1968 Country of Loss: South Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 125912N 1081406E (BQ001372) Status (in 1973): Missing in Action Category: 2 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: M113 (APC) Refno: 1290 Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 30 June 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 1998. REMARKS: SYNOPSIS: PFC Barry A. Olson was a member of B Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry. On September 26, 1968, he was riding on top of an armored personnel carrier while his unit conducted a tactical move along Highway 14 in Darlac Province, South Vietnam. Their position was approximately 20-25 miles northeast of Ban Me Thuot. During the move, the APC was hit by an anti-tank round (a D-40 rocket). In the confusion that followed, it was first believed that Olson had been evacuated from the area by helicopter. However, the investigating board could find no evidence that this had occurred. The APC commander reported that at the time of the incident, Olson had been sitting on claymore mines and grenades and that the anti-tank round had hit the tank near Olson. A search of the area was made at the time of the incident and again on October 17, but both searches were unsuccessful. Flyers were distributed in the area asking for information concerning Olson, but no new evidence surfaced. There was sufficient doubt that Olson was killed that he was not declared dead, but rather was declared Missing in Action. The U.S. Army believes that the Vietnamese could probably account for Olson, alive or dead. For 22 years, the Vietnamese have denied knowledge of the fate of Barry A. Olson. Disturbing testimony was given to Congress in 1980 that the Vietnamese "stockpiled" the remains of Americans to return at politically advantageous times. Could Olson be waiting, in a casket, for just such a moment? Even more disturbing are the over 10,000 reports received by the U.S. relating to Americans missing in Southeast Asia. Many authorities who have examined this information (largely classified), have reluctantly come to the conclusion that many Americans are still alive in Southeast Asia. Could Olson be among these? Perhaps the most compelling questions when remains are returned are, "Is it really who they say it is?", and "How -- and when -- did he die?" As long as reports continue to be received which indicate Americans are still alive in Indochina, we can only regard the return of remains as a politically expedient way to show "progress" on accounting for American POW/MIAs. As long as reports continue to be received, we must wonder how many are alive. As long as even one American remains alive, held against his will, we must do everything possible to bring him home -- alive.