Name: Mike John Scott
Rank/Branch: E7/US Army
Date of Birth: 02 September 1932
Home City of Record: Newark NJ  Born:  GOSTYNIN POLAND
Date of Loss: 13 May 1969
Country of Loss: Laos
Loss Coordinates: 152330N 1073600E (YC787037)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 4
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: O1G
Refno: 1443

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 2020.

Other Personnel in Incident: Bruce C. Bessor (missing)


SYNOPSIS: On May 13, 1969, 1Lt. Bruce Bessor, pilot, and SFC Mike J. Scott,
observer were flying on an O1G aircraft (serial #51-16959) on a radio relay
mission for a Special Forces reconnaissance team in the area of the
Vietnam/Laos border. SFC Scott was assigned to Command and Control Central,
MACV-SOG (Military Assistance Command, Vietnam Studies and Observation
Group). MACV-SOG was a joint service high command unconventional warfare
task force engaged in highly classified operations throughout Southeast
Asia. The 5th Special Forces channeled personnel into MACV-SOG (although it
was not a Special Forces group) through Special Operations Augmentation
(SOA), which provided their "cover" while under secret orders to MACV-SOG.
The teams performed deep penetration missions of strategic reconnaissance
and interdiction which were called, depending on the time frame, "Shining
Brass" or "Prairie Fire" missions.

At about 0800 hours, when the recon team had radio contact with 1Lt.
Bessor's aircraft, they heard aircraft engine noise southwest of their
position followed by 15 rounds of 37mm fire and engine sputtering but no
sound of crash, then a large volume of rifle fire from the same direction.
The reconnaissance team then lost radio contact with the aircraft.

Search aircraft attempted to enter into the suspected crash control site,
but cloud cover and enemy fire prevented them from doing so. On May 18, the
area was visually searched, but nothing was found. Bessor and Scott were
declared Missing in Action. They are among nearly 600 Americans still
missing in Laos.

In the early 1970's the Pathet Lao stated on a number of occasions that they
held "tens of tens" of American prisoners and that those captured in Laos
would also be released from Laos. Unfortunately, that release never
occurred, because the U.S. did not include Laos in the negotiations which
brought American involvement in the war to an end. The country of Laos was
bombed by U.S. forces for several months following the Peace Accords in
January 1973, and Laos steadfastly refused to talk about releasing our POWs
until we discontinued bombing in their country.

Consequently, no American held in Laos was ever returned. By 1989, these
"tens of tens" apparently have been forgotten. The U.S. has negotiated with
the same government entity which declared it held American POWs and has
agreed to build clinics and help improve relations with Laos. If, as
thousands of reports indicate, Americans are still alive in Indochina as
captives, then the U.S. is collaborating in signing their death warrants.




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On May 13, 1969, an O-1G Bird Dog (tail number 51-16959, call sign "Aerial Observer 02") carrying two crew members took off on a radio relay mission for a Special Forces reconnaissance team in the area of the Vietnam-Laos border. During the mission, the reconnaissance team made radio contact with this Bird Dog and at that time could hear anti-aircraft artillery fire to the southwest of their position. The reconnaissance team then lost radio contact with the Bird Dog. The Bird Dog failed to return to base. Following the incident, cloud cover and enemy presence prevented an aerial search for the plane's suspected crash site.

Sergeant First Class Mike John Scott entered the U.S. Army from New Jersey and was a member of Special Operations Augmentation, Command and Control, 5th Special Forces Group. He was the observer aboard this Bird Dog when it disappeared, and he was lost with the aircraft. He remains unaccounted for. Subsequent to the incident, and while carried in the status of missing in action (MIA), the U.S. Army promoted Sergeant First Class Scott to the rank of Master Sergeant (MSG). Today, Master Sergeant Scott 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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