SCUNGIO, VINCENT ANTHONY
Name: Vincent Anthony Scungio
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Date of Birth: 27 October 1934
Home City of Record: New Castle PA (family still in New Castle PA, AZ, CA,
FL and MI)
Date of Loss: 04 November 1966
Country of Loss: North Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 212400N 1061100E
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Source: Compiled 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 in 2000, 2008 and 2009
with information from Vincent A Scungio, Jr. and Annette Scungio Sheridan.
Other Personnel In Incident: Robert E. Brinckmann (remains returned)
SYNOPSIS: The F105 Thunderchief ("Thud"), in its various versions, flew more
missions against North Vietnam than any other U.S. aircraft. It also
suffered more losses, partially due to its vulnerability, which was
constantly under revision. Between 1965 and 1971, the aircraft was equipped
with armor plate, a secondary flight control system, an improved pilot
ejection seat, a more precise navigation system, better blind bombing
capability and ECM pods for the wings. The F model carried a second crewman
which made it well suited for the role of suppressing North Vietnam's
Major Robert E. Brinckmann was an F105F Air Force pilot assigned a combat
mission over North Vietnam on November 4, 1966. His co-pilot that day was
Capt. Vincent A. Scungio.
When the aircraft was about 60 miles northeast of Hanoi in Ha Bac Province,
North Vietnam, it was hit by enemy fire and crashed. Scungio and Brinckmann
were declared Missing In Action.
When 591 Americans were released from Vietnam in 1973, Scungio and
Brinckmann were not among them. Military officials were shocked to learn
that hundreds of Americans known or suspected to be prisoners of war were
In an attempt to determine those cases for which the Vietnamese should be
able to make an accounting, the Defense Intelligence Agency expanded
Brinckmann and Scungio's classification to include an enemy knowledge
ranking of 2. Category 2 indicates "suspect knowledge" and includes
personnel who may have been involved in loss incidents with individuals
reported in Category 1 (confirmed knowledge), or who were lost in areas or
under conditions that they may reasonably be expected to be known by the
enemy; who were connected with an incident which was discussed but not
identified by names in enemy news media; or identified (by elimination, but
not 100% positively) through analysis of all-source intelligence. Still, the
Vietnamese denied any knowledge of the two missing Americans.
Since the war ended, nearly 10,000 5000 reports have been received by the
U.S. Government regarding Americans missing, prisoner or unaccounted for in
Vietnam. Some, in the words of one State Department official, have withstood
the closest scrutiny possible, and cannot be disputed. There is very strong
reason to believe that Americans are still held captive in Southeast Asia
In late July, 1989 remains were returned to the United States by the
Vietnamese which were subsequently identified as being those of Robert E.
Brinckmann. Brinckmann had been -- dead or alive -- a prisoner of war for 23
years. The obvious question is how and when did he die? And, of course,
where is Vincent Scungio?
Nearly 2500 Americans did not return from the war in Vietnam. Thousands of
reports have been received indicating that some hundreds remain alive in
captivity. Vietnam and her communist allies can account for most of them.
Current "negotiations" between the U.S. and Vietnam have yielded the remains
of nearly 300 Americans. The families of these men at last have the peace of
knowing whether their loved one is alive or dead.
In the total view of the issue of the missing, however, the return of
remains signals no progress. In the early 1980's the very credible
Congressional testimony of a Vietnamese mortician indicated that the
Vietnamese are in possession of over 400 sets of remains. In 15 years, they
have returned barely half of them. More importantly, the same credible
witness, whose testimony is believed throughout Congress, stated that he had
seen live Americans held at the same location where the remains were stored.
As long as even one American remains alive in captivity in Southeast Asia,
the only issue is that one living man. We must bring them home before there
are only remains to negotiate for.
Apr 05 1999
Case 0512 was excavated by Joint Task Force Full Accounting during the
months of February and March 1999. The site yielded remains, but it has not
yet been determined if they were US or Vietnamese. Witness reports that the
body of Scungio was buried in a local garden. The Vietnamese gave no new
clues as to the ultimate fate of Vincent Scungio. It was noted that the
Vietnamese said they found the remains of LTC Brinckman about 20 kilometers
from the site they say Scungio was located at. Brinkman was found and given
to the United States in 1989. Whether or not the remains are positively
identified or not, Site 0512 was officially closed in March of 99.
On June 1, 2000, Mrs. Rose Scungio passed away. Perhaps she will find the
peace and answers she sought in life about her son, in her afterlife. Our
deepest sympathy to the family.
Subject: MIA Vincent A. Scungio - my brother
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2000 09:35:37 -0500
From: Annette Sheridan
My name is Annette Scungio Sheridan, and I am asking for your help....
Could you please add that Vince's father - Frank J. Scungio passed away
November 23, 1991 - Vince was the oldest and the apple of my parents' eyes -
He gave them much joy, and 4 grandchildren. Thanks
Date: Jun 26, 2007 8:36 AM
Subject: Case Summary - Major Vincent A. Scungio - Government Briefings, Wash, D.C. 22-23 Jun 07
Attached is the case summary pertaining to the case of your father and
forwarded per your request.
William R. Frampton
Senior Liaison Officer
Air Force Missing Persons Branch
At 03:35 PM 7/19/2008, you wrote:
From: Vincent Scungio [
I'm the Son of Major Vincent A. Scungio MIA 4, Nov. 1966 (Machete 1) case #0512.
I received an e-mail from a mutual friend, Dave McNeil. In the e-mail he forwarded it states that you might have some information for my Family & I. You stated that the Government had asked someone in our family if they wanted the information released, and the response was "No".
I'm not surprised about that, and I would suspect that it was our mother. She never told us anything about our Father. We weren't aloud to talk about it ether.
I'm hoping that any information you might have will be new to me. I have been digging for information since the mid 80's. My sister's and I have received conflicting stories for many years from the Government. Dave helped me get in contact with Barbara Brinckmann, the Pilot of our Dad's bird. She told me that when she brought her Father home in 1989 the Government sat down with her to discuss the case, they had very detailed information with graphic pictures of her Father still in the aircraft after the crash. In September I'm supposed to meet with her and she is going to bring all the information about her Dad so I can go through every piece with her.
I know you said you are
retiring soon, congratulations!!! I hope the Hunting is very good in
For Those Who Fought For
It, Freedom Has A Flavor The Protected Will Never Know! Freedom Is Not
Free! I Know First Hand! I'm the son of USAF Major Vincent A. Scungio,
Wild Weasel #99 Missing In Action 4, Nov. 1966. Route Pac Vl-A, near
Vincent A. Scungio Jr.
(Machete/Ghost) Wild Weasel #2549 Society Life Member
"Forsyth, William Civ JPAC J2" wrote:
"Forsyth, William Civ JPAC J2" wrote:
Sorry for the delay in getting back to you, swamped with short suspences this week. I am the Lao and Cambodia POW/MIA analyst here at JPAC, had not worked your dad's case at all, but can give you what we have in our database, which is:
Circumstances of loss:
On 4 November 1966, Capt Scungio and Lt Col Brinckman (pilot) were flying an F-105F "Wild Weasel" in a flight of four. Due to the missile threat, the flight was forced to split into two elements. As Capt Scungio's aircraft was attacking, another of the F105s observed a long stream of fire trailing from the aircraft. He called three times to inform the pilot, who replied he knew. At this time the other F-105 saw a SAM launch and maneuvered away, losing sight of Capt Scungio and Lt Col Brinckman's aircraft in the vicinity of XJ 243 667. The aircraft was not seen or heard from after this time.
The remains of Lt Col Brinckman were repatriated by the SRV government in July 1989. CILHI identified them in December 1989.
02/97: Material Evidence Analysis: JPAC-CIL analyzed material evidence recovered from an isolated burial site (48Q XJ 37703 42070) in Hai Hung Province during JFA 43. The team recovered one piece of possible flight suit material (orange), several pieces of possible flight boot leather. They photographed and left one piece of possible environmental control blanket, one piece of engine low pressure compressor outer ring, several pieces of rubberized fuel bladder material, one bendix plug, two pieces of fiberglass, and one piece of engine turbine blade with part number.
JPAC assessed that the
flight suit material is actually the storage pocket closure flap from a
one-man life raft, the boot leather is consistent with standard
07/99: Material Evidence
Analysis: JPAC-CIL analyzed material evidence recovered from an isolated
burial site and suspected F-105 crash site (VIC 48Q XJ 37703 42070,
The items recovered include: boot heel piece, parachute flap piece, two fiberglass pieces, and several pieces of unidentified metal. The team photographed, and left in place one .38 caliber bullet projectile. JPAC assessed that the boot heel is probably from an aviator flight boot.
The flap piece is from a back style paprachute, and the bullet is consistent with the ammunition used by aviators. JPAC reported there were six F-105's and one RF-101 incident (ref msg dtg 212016 Jul 99).
12/00: CILHI assessed the fragmented remains (CILHI 1999-042) from the excavation during the 54th JFA and determined the following:
- Two fragments are non-osseous material, neither human nor animal in origin.
- One fragment is from a large animal (non-human).
- Three fragments are from a large animal, but cannot be assigned to a species due to lack of diagnostic features.
OCT 93, JFA 26: A joint
team investigated this case in Tien Luc Village, Lang Giang District,
the last known location carried in
FEB-MAR 95, JFA 34: Team
investigated case in
- Tran Van Cung described a burning jet from which one pilot ejected. The pilot was wounded and soon died. The militia turned over the pilot's equipment and personal effects to the province military commander, Dang Van Dong, now dead. Two days later they were ordered to bury the body. In 1972-73, Cung heard that unidentified officials and Vu Thi Ngac recovered the remains.
- Ta Dao Ly, provided similar information.
- Vu Thi Ngac provided similar information adding that remains were recovered in 1975.
- Central government: Mr. Tuan of MOD said Pham Teo said the Vietnamese government had already provided all records and documentation associated with American remains and remains recoveries. Local officials don't have many records concerning these issues.
JAN 96, JFA 39: Team searched for crashsite in the vicinity of Tri Yen.
- VNOSMP said it could not
find any witnesses in
- Team interviewed two witnesses and saw a reported crashsite in Bac An Village, Chi Linh District, Hai Hung. Mid-1965 captured one American pilot--probably Case 0176 (returnee) according to Ha Bac Command Chronology).
- Three witnesses in
DEC 96, JFA 43: A joint
team excavated a burial site near Hung Dao Village, Chi Linh District,
- Vo Duy Do described seeing a burning aircraft flying from the direction of Ha Bac that crashed and exploded near his house. Later that afternoon, he and villagers went to the site where they saw numerous pieces of wreckage and remains. Do heard that Mr. Lap, who died in 1987, gathered the remains and wrapped them in a tarp, then buried them on the edge of a local cemetery. After the war villagers covered the cemetery with one meter of clay. The cemetery remained untouched since it was an ancient burial ground, and any remains still there were unclaimed by local villagers.
Team recommended further excavation but also recommended that when a team found Vietnamese burial containers, that these should not be opened but left in place.
(Comment: The Vietnamese
later indicated that local people were strongly opposed to further
excavation in this cemetery, which offended their religious beliefs and
exacerbated local superstitions. Per
MAY 98, JFA 50: Due to the sensitive nature of this excavation, a small team offered only technical expertise to a Vietnamese excavation team.
However, the site had been transformed from a cemetery into an agricultural field by adding 30 cm of fill dirt to the ground surface. With the exception of this topsoil, the ground was very mottled compact clay, making the excavation difficult and slow. Time constraints and the size of the site prevented the completion of the excavation. No human remains or personal effects were found.
MAR 99, JFA 54: The team completed the excavation of the burial site (XJ 377 420) and crashsite in Chi Linh District, Hai Duong Province.
The team excavated approximately 158 square meters to culturally sterile soil, recovering possible human remains, life support equipment, and aircraft wreckage from the burial site. The crashsite was located 200 meters north of the burial site on a hillside. The area had been altered for the cultivation of fruit trees and had also been used as a cemetery. Wreckage included mostly small unidentifiable pieces that could not be correlated conclusively to a specific aircraft; however, pieces of a back style parachute are consistent with an F-105.
No remains were recovered.
REMAINS: On 31 July 1989,
the SRV repatriated the remains of Lt
Col Brinckman, which were subsequently identified, and
RECORDS: Ha Bac Command Chronology lists this incident; says rocket company shot down one F4 this date; one pilot dead, burned one (illegible word) The, Tri Yen, Yen Dung.
Typewritten record from Ha Bac Province Ministry of Public Security,
dated 17 November 1972 was given to Congressman
Entry # 13
comments on crewmember Brynck Mann Robert: 1Lt, died 21 Jun 1966, buried at Tan Thinh, Chi Yen, Yen Dung.
Handwritten, Statistic of Information Source and Aircraft of American
Pilots in the Ha Bac Area. Provided to Congressman Richardson Delegation
30 May 1995. Undated but compares information provided by Ha Bac
Province team, Ha Bac Police, and
DELIVERED 24 JUNE 1996: Unilateral team working in June 1996 interviewed
two witnesses (Vu Hai Khanh and Vu Chi Cu), who knew about a pilot who
ejected and landed in
The pilot died and was buried. The remains were later exhumed and repatriated.
Khanh saw smoke in the
vicinity of Hung Dao Hill, Chi Linh District, Hai Hung. He later heard
there was aircraft wreckage at the site, and that the second pilot had
died in the aircraft. Two witnesses (Tran Van Ba and Vu Thi Hao) in
Phuong Son Hamlet,
There is knowledge of this incident as demonstrated by the return of the remains of one crew member and by province military records. The remains already repatriated are those of the crewmember who apparently was able to eject from the aircraft prior to impact. Though officials were probably knowledgeable about the incident, the fact that Capt Scungio was in the aircraft at time of impact (and his remains were fragmented and scattered, and probably never under any official custody) makes the recovery of his remains very problematic.
Further Pursuit (Coordinated 7 May 2003)
Further pursuit of this case is deferred pending further information, remains, or advances in forensic technology. The burial site for Captain Scungio has been located and thoroughly excavated recovering possible remains, life support equipment, and aircraft wreckage consistent with an F-105. The potential human remains (recovered during 54th JFA) are too small and fragmented for current capabilities to determine their origin and are considered undiagnostic. There are no viable leads to further the resolution of this case at this time.
We currently have the case
in "Deferred JPAC-CIL" status, which means we have possible
remains in the Central Identification Laboratory, but can not identify
them with the current technology. Every month they have family updates
around the country (below), there is one this month in
If you wish to attend,
contact Air Force Casualty - US Air Force POW/MIA Program: http://ask.afpc.randolph.af.mil
, you do not have to be the primary family member.
Family Events and Schedule
The Defense POW/Missing
Personnel Office (DPMO) conducts monthly updates and annual government
briefings for families of American servicemembers who are missing in
action. These events are designed to keep family members informed of the
Eight times a year, government specialists meet in major metropolitan areas across the country with MIA family members who live within a 350-mile radius of the city. These meetings are designed to address the individual needs of the family members while bringing information to their communities. Government officials also meet one-on-one with family members to discuss the details of each of their cases. About 150-200 family members and 30 government officials attend each meeting.
In addition to the updates
in other cities, two briefings are held annually in the
The 2008 Schedule for the Family Updates and Annual Government Briefings is:
2008 Family Update Schedule
Jan 12 -
Feb 9 -
Apr 19 -
May 17 -
June 19-21 -
July 26 -
Aug 23 -
Oct 16-18 -
Nov 15 -
- The Southeast Asia Annual Government Briefing held in conjunction with the National League of Families Annual Meeting
** - The Korean and Cold War Annual Government Briefings
From: Vincent Scungio [
Hello Mr. Forsyth,
I thank you for taking time out of your day to find & send this information to me.
The story has not changed and the results are the same. I went to the last family meeting that was held in Detroit 2003. I had read the same report at that time.
The reason for the meetings is to find out what JPAC is currently doing and what they are going to do in the future to find our loved ones and bring them home. As a result of finding out that JPAC has pretty much closed this case, I left that meeting just after lunch. The Representative that came from Randolph AFB handed this same report to me, smiled and walked away. I was not impressed.
After almost four hours of driving to get there, I felt like they had waisted my time & money. I was under the impression that he had some new information. Only to find that there was never going to be any further excavation of a supposed burial site because of protest.
It also seemed very funny that the indigenous people living around this site are against further excavation because of superstitions, but they put a junk yard on top of part of this ancient cemetery, and they put dirt over the graves and start growing vegetables?
I guess I shouldn't drop this in your lap, I did erase two paragraphs.
Thanks again for all your hard work, and the rest of the crews that search for loved ones in other countries where our Brothers & Fathers lie in wait for someone to find them.
Happy 4th to You and Yours.
Vincent A. Scungio Jr.
Thanks for the reply and I understand your feelings.
Have a Good 4th
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 2009 12:50:51 -0700 (PDT)
From: Vincent Scungio <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Latest Info from USAF HQ AFPC/DPWCM Case # 0512
To: Chuck and Mary Schantag <email@example.com>
Hello Mary & Chuck,
I'm attaching the whole report that I received recently. And YES, if you want to, you can put this with the rest of the information you have on your web site about my Father.
And Thank You for all the work you do to Honor Our Veterans, & Expose the Wannabees!!
I put these Wild Weasel Mission Recordings up, it took a long time for a Viet Nam Veteran Big Brother of mine to talk me into doing it since they are US Military History. And the fact that I found out that someone stole the "Locust Flight" recording, cut it all up to change my Father's & his Pilot's (Bob Brinckmann) voices & taking credit for the Mission as their own. So I put up the real thing for the world to hear. It took me a week to complete, Enjoy!