Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association Vietnam Memorial

Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association Vietnam Memorial (HM1K2V)

Location: Riverside, OH 45431 Montgomery County
Country: United States of America

N 39° 46.793', W 84° 6.766'

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Inscription

"We Who Came Home Must Never Forget Those Who Could Not"

— River Rats —

Aircrews from all services of the United States military flying over the Red River Valley in North Vietnam encountered the most heavily defended airspace in the history of aerial combat. The Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association (or River Rats as the members call themselves) was born in 1967 when aircrews from different organizations gathered to devise better tactics for use during airstrikes over North Vietnam. The organization was formally incorporated in 1969 to promote and preserve the unique bond of friendship between combat airmen from different organizations and services fostered in the air war over North Vietnam. After the Vietnamese War the efforts of the organization were directed toward generating awareness of the Prisoners of War, Missing-in-Action and Killed-in-Action (POW, MIA and KIA) airmen and their families, providing scholarship support for the children of the men who failed to return and promoting the importance of American airpower. The Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association has awarded numerous scholarships to the children of airmen who did not return from Vietnam. The River Rats have become surrogate fathers to these children helping with educational expenses when a missing father could not.
Mark Pritchett of San Antonio, Texas created this memorial for the Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association. He also designed and built the original Missing Man Memorial at Randolph AFB, Texas in 1977.
Although the units listed are those which flew over the Red River Valley in North Vietnam, this memorial is dedicated to all American airmen lost in Southeast Asia.
U.S. Air Force Squadrons
Tactical Fighter
4, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 25, 34, 35, 36, 43, 44, 45, 47, 58, 67, 68, 80, 307, 308, 333, 334, 335, 336, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 389, 390, 391, 416, 417, 421, 429, 430, 431, 433, 434, 435, 436, 469, 476, 480, 497, 523, 555, 557, 558, 559, 561, 562, 563
Tactical Reconnaissance
11, 14, 15, 20, 41, 45, 60, 6460, 6461
Bombardment
60, 63 (Prov), 64 (Prov), 65 (Prov), 329 (Prov), 364 (Prov), 365 (Prov), 486 (Prov)
Tactical Electronics
41, 42, 63 (Prov)
Strategic Reconnaissance
1, 99, 349
Fighter Interceptor
64, 509
Wild Weasel
17, 6010
Special Operations
1, 15, 602
Strategic Reconnaissance Weather
4028
Rescue and Recovery
37, 40
U.S. Navy Squadrons
Attack
VA-12, 15, 22, 23, 25, 27, 34, 35, 36, 37, 46, 52, 55, 56, 65, 72, 75, 76, 82, 85, 86, 93, 94, 95, 97, 105, 106, 112, 113, 115, 144, 145, 146, 147, 152, 153, 155, 163, 164, 165, 172, 176, 192, 195, 196, 212, 215, 216
VAH-2, 4, 8, 10
VAW-11, 12, 13, 33, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 121, 123, 124
Fighter
VF-11, 14, 21, 24, 31, 32, 41, 51, 53, 74, 84, 92, 96, 103, 111, 114, 142, 151, 154, 161, 162, 191, 194, 211, 213
VSF-3
Reconnaissance
RVAH-1, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12, 13
VAP-61
VFP-62, 63
Helicopter
HC-1, 2, 7
HS-2, 4, 6, 7, 8
HU-1, 2
Electronic Reconnaissance
VQ-1
Electronic Warfare
VAQ-33, 130, 131, 132, 134, 135
U.S. Marine Corps Squadrons
All Weather Attack
VMA (AW)-224, 242, 533
Fighter and Attack
VMFA-115, 122, 212, 232, 333, 542
Photo Reconnaissance
VMCJ-1, 2
U.S. Army
On 20-21 November 1970 a Joint Contingency Task Force composed of U.S. Army Special Forces and U.S. Air Force Special Operations Forces supported by U.S. Navy Carrier Task Force 77 made a daring raid on Son Tay Prison just 23 miles from Hanoi, North Vietnam. Their mission was to rescue U.S. airmen being held as prisoners of war. The raid was a brilliant military success transporting, landing and recovering an assault force of 56 U.S. Army and 92 U.S. Air Force personnel deep inside heavily defended enemy territory without the loss of a single man. Although the prisoners had been moved before the mission began and no POW's were rescued, the raid resulted in substantially improved living conditions for all U.S. airmen held prisoner by the North Vietnamese. The assault force was supported by the U.S. Navy flying an effective diversionary raid from the Tonkin Gulf Carrier Task Force. Additional mission support was provided by USAF MIG CAP, SAM suppression, and reconnaissance units. A total of 116 aircraft from seven air bases and three aircraft carriers participated in the raid. Men of the following units formed the Joint Contingency Task Force. They risked their lives and freedom in an attempt to bring freedom to others.
U.S. Army Units
XVIII Airborne Corps
U.S. Army Institute for Military Assistance
U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Center for Military Assistance
U.S. Army Infantry School
Office of Surgeon General, Department of the Army
82nd Airborne Division
6th & 7th Special Forces Groups, 1st Special Forces
U.S. Air Force Units
Aerospace Rescue & Recovery Training Center
1st Special Operations Wing
37th & 40th Aerospace Rescue & Recovery Squadrons
1st & 7th Special Operations Squadrons
602nd Special Operations Squadron
4407th Combat Crew Training Squadron
13th & 555th Tactical Fighter Squadrons
6010 Wild Weasel Squadron
U.S. Navy Units
VA-25, 65, 113, 145, 153, 155, 164, 212
VAQ-129, 130, 134
VAW-111
VF-21, 21, 154, 191, 194, 211
Details
HM NumberHM1K2V
Tags
Year Placed1988
Placed ByRed River Valley Fighter Pilots Association
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, April 20th, 2015 at 6:05pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 747262 N 4407314
Decimal Degrees39.77988333, -84.11276667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 46.793', W 84° 6.766'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 46' 47.58" N, 84° 6' 45.96" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)937
Closest Postal AddressAt or near Spaatz Cir, Riverside OH 45431, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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