VAN CAMPEN, THOMAS CHARLES Name: Thomas Charles Van Campen Rank/Branch: E3/US Army Unit: Company B, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry, 173rd Airborne Division Date of Birth: 28 December 1945 Home City of Record: Oroville CA Date of Loss: 24 June 1965 Country of Loss: South Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 105912N 1064934E (YT075215) Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered Category: 2 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground Refno: 0102 Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 September 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: WOUNDED - SEPARATED FROM UNIT - J SYNOPSIS: PFC Thomas C. Van Campen was on a combat operation with his unit near Bien Hoa, South Vietnam on June 24, 1965 when the unit came under enemy sniper fire. During the encounter, Van Campen was wounded and became separated from the unit. Because of the hostile forces in the area, others in the unit could not get to his position, and as a consequence, he was not recovered when the unit left the area. It was believed, however, that he was dead when the unit left the area. Subsequent searches of the area failed to reveal any further information. Since the war ended in Vietnam, refugees have flooded the world, bringing with them stories of American soldiers still held prisoner in their homeland. As of mid-1990, there were over 10,000 of these reports. Many authorities now believe that hundreds were left behind as living hostages and are alive today. Thomas C. Van Campen is not believed to have survived the events of June 24, 1965. His family has accepted that he is dead. They no longer expect him to come home someday. But hundreds of families wait expectantly and in the special agony only uncertainty can bring. Hundreds of men wait in caves, cages and prisons. How much longer will we allow the abandonment of our best men? It's time we brought them home.