Name: Bernard Herbert Plassmeyer
Rank/Branch: O2/US Marine Corps
Unit: Marine Attack Squadron 311
Date of Birth: 05 May 1945
Home City of Record: Freeburg MO
Date of Loss: 11 September 1970
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 145228N 1084623E
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 2
Acft/Vehicle/Ground: A4E
Refno: 1660
Other Personnel in Incident: None missing

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project March 1991 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: Bernard H. Plassmeyer was born May 5, 1945, the fourth son of Mr.
and Mrs. Paul Plassmeyer of Westphalia, Missouri. Bernie attended St. Joseph
grade school, Fatima High School, and graduated from Parks College of
Aeronautical Technology of St. Louis University in 1966.

In early 1967, Bernie joined the Marine Corps, receiving his commission as a
Marine officer in June 1967, and the wings of a Naval Aviator March 21,
1969. He was selected to receive the Orville Wright Achievement Award for
outstanding performance as a Marine Corps aviator on August 29, 1969.

In February 1970, Plassmeyer went to Vietnam and was assigned to Marine
Attack Squadron 311. He had completed approximately 100 missions with
VMA-311 at Chu Lai and Da Nang when his A4E Skyhawk crashed during a support
mission near the Laos/Vietnam border on September 11, 1970. He was
classified Missing In Action until 1976, when he was declared dead for lack
of evidence to the contrary.

Bernie Plassmeyer went missing 16 days before the birth of his only son. His
family would like to know where he is, and what happened to him. Like nearly
2500 other Americans, he remains missing in Southeast Asia.

Were it not for thousands of reports of Americans still alive in captivity
in Southeast Asia, it would be a simple matter to build a memorial and lay
these missing men to rest. But as long as one man, whomever he may be,
remains alive and in captivity, every family will wonder. And Bernie
Plassmeyer's fate will remain uncertain.

                                                [ssrep6.txt 02/09/93]

South Vietnam         Bernard H. Plassmeyer

On September 11, 1970, Plassmeyer was the pilot of an A-4E on a
support mission near the A Shau Valley, Thua Thien Province.  It
appeared that his aircraft was downed by hostile groundfire and
crashed in the target area.  There was no evidence of a parachute,
and no beeper signal was heard.  A later search located the
wreckage and from its condition determined that Plassmeyer's
aircraft had disintegrated upon impact.  That same day, a forward
air controller saw a parachute and torso harness in some nearby
trees.  There appeared to be blood on the harness.  Plassmeyer was
initially declared missing in action.

Returning U.S. POWs had no information on his precise fate, and he
was later declared dead/body not recovered based on a presumptive
finding of death.

In March 1991, U.S. investigators in Vietnam located the crash site
associated with this incident.  They were unable to locate any
witnesses to the shoot down and could not locate any remains.
However, they did locate fragments of the aircraft's ejection seat
and a face piece which indicated the pilot did not eject from the
aircraft prior to impact.



Westphalia native among 50 Marines honored on monument


Nearly 44 years after 1st Lt. Bernard Plassmeyer’s plane went down in South Vietnam, the Westphalia native
was among those honored April 25 at Marine Corps Base Quantico near Triangle, Va.

He was among 50 members of The Basic School’s Class 6-67 — the sixth graduating class of 1967 — to
have their names etched on a monument. Plassmeyer was the class honor graduate out of nearly 500 in his class.

Plassmeyer’s brother, Norb Plassmeyer, was one of those attending the monument dedication as a guest of the
Marine organizers​. Norb Plassmeyer, who has lived on the home farm at Westphalia since returning there in 1971
after a brief career in the aerospace industry, is a lobbyist in Jefferson City.​...


Lawmakers to prioritize finding state MIAs ... and to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) — the agency charged with trying to resolve the ...


The Jefferson Barracks POW-MIA Museum  Advisory Board Member, Norb Plassmeyer has authored
Missouri Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 42 asking the Missouri Senate and House of Representatives
to call upon the Missouri members of the U.S. Senate to support and contribute to the passage of U.S. Senate
Bill 120 calling for the declassifying of files pertaining to POWs and MIAs, some 50 years or more old,
allowing for a more complete and expedited resolution of those service members still unaccounted for.

A copy of the resolution as it appeared in the Journal of the Missouri Senate (Feb. 6, 2018) is attached below. 


A Memorial Day Remembrance for Bernie, Who Was Lost in Vietnam

27 May 2019 | By Richard Sisk

My friend Bernie went missing on a 1970 bombing run in Vietnam. Every Memorial Day since has come as
a reminder of the void he left in the lives of those he served with, his family and all who knew him....

On Sept. 19, 2019, Norbert shared his family's story as a guest speaker for an annual POW/MIA event at Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital.




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Captain Bernard Herbert Plassmeyer entered the U.S. Marine Corps from Missouri and was a member of Marine Attack Squadron 311, Marine Air Group 11, 1st Marine Air Wing. On September 11, 1970, he was the pilot of an A-4E Skyhawk (bureau number 151165) that was in the wingman position on a two-aircraft close air support mission for friendly ground troops near the Ashau Valley on the South Vietnam/Laos border. As he made his attack run over the target area, the pilot of the other aircraft on the mission observed that Captain Plassmeyer's Skyhawk was struck by enemy anti-aircraft fire and crashed. Immediate search and rescue efforts were launched, but failed to locate the crash site or Captain Plassmeyer in the jungle-covered terrain where he had gone down. He remains unaccounted for. Today, Captain Plassmeyer 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.

If you are a family member of this serviceman, DPAA can provide you with additional information and analysis of your case. Please contact your casualty office representative.

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