Select one of my POW-MIA Dedication Pages:
Bobby Neeld] [Capt
Mitchell Lane] [Capt
Randall Craddock] [Col
Stuart Andrews] [SSgt
Connecticut Memorial] [Viet
Nam Veterans Memorial Wall]
Name: Bobby Gene Neeld
Rank/Branch: O4/US Air Force
Unit: 188th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Tuy Hoa AB, South Vietnam
Date of Birth: 08 October 1928
Home City of Record: Albuquerque NM
Date of Loss: 04 January 1969
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 120100N 1090200E (BP860291)
Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
Other Personnel in Incident: Mitchell
S. Lane (missing from another F100)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 01 April 1990 with the assistance
of 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.
Actual USG definition
of Category assigned to each POW/MIA
SYNOPSIS: The North American F100 Super Sabre, nicknamed "Hun,"
single seat jet fighter that first came into service during the Korean
War. During the
Gulf of Tonkin Crises, which catapulted the United States head long
into the Vietnam
War, the first Air Force F100 squadrons were sent to DaNang, South
August 1964. Interestingly, during both wars, the Hun's most valuable
uses were in
close air support for ground troops, and as principle strike aircraft
because it could
deliver its ordnance on target at treetop level at full speed.
On 3 January 1969, then Major Bobby G. Neeld and 1st Lt. Mitchell S.
departed Tuy Hoa Airfield, South Vietnam, on a 2-aircraft flight that
to divert to Phan Rang Airfield, Khanh Hoa Province, South Vietnam
due to adverse
weather conditions. Phan Rang Airfield was approximately 100 miles
Tuy Hoa Airfield. The next day, 4 January 1969, Maj. Bobby Neeld was
of the lead aircraft, call sign "Taco 81;" and 1st Lt. Mitchell Lane
was the pilot of
the #2 aircraft, call sign "Taco 82;" that comprised a 2-aircraft flight
on a Troop
Assault Preparation mission against enemy positions near a landing
Taco flight departed Phan Rang Airfield at 0717 hours on the briefed
and was to return to their base afterward. However, after completing
mission, Taco flight was again diverted to Phan Rang Airfield by Tuy
Operational Control due to deteriorating weather conditions. At the
flight changed flight paths, Maj. Neeld had a fuel load of 5400 lbs.
1st Lt. Lane had 5000 lbs. The fuel requirement for the flight from
Tuy Hoa to
Phan Rang was 1750 lbs.
As Maj. Neeld and 1st Lt. Lane prepared to depart Tuy Hoa airspace,
requested an in route descent to VFR condition which was disallowed
call (the flight control center) as their separation from IFR traffic
could not be
guaranteed. At 0825 hours, Taco flight was given a vector of 160 degrees
radar monitoring was discontinued by the control center.
Radio contact was established with Bobby Neeld and Mitchell Lane when
were over rugged jungle covered mountains approximately 73 miles southwest
of Tuy Hoa, 11 miles west-northwest of Cam Ranh Bay Airbase and 11
west of the coastline. Weather conditions included winds from 330 degrees
2 knots, visibility of more than 6 miles. Broken stratus clouds had
200 feet with tops at 3000 feet. There was also a solid cloud overcast
with its base at 9000 feet along with occasional light rain from the
with lower visibility in that direction. At the time of their last
contact, there was
no indication of trouble with either aircraft.
By 1045 hours Taco flight had not landed at Phan Rang Airfield and all
airfields in South Vietnam and Thailand were contacted in the hope
diverted to one of them instead. Over the next 3 days as weather conditions
improved, extensive visual and electronic search and rescue (SAR) efforts
were initiated over land and water adjacent to their last known location.
efforts were terminated the evening of 6 January 1969 because of forecasted
poor weather conditions in the search area. At the time the formal
was terminated, both Bobby Neeld and Mitchell Lane were listed Missing
Since the end of the Vietnam War well over 21,000 reports of American
missing and otherwise unaccounted for have been received by our government.
Many of these reports document LIVE America Prisoners of War remaining
captive throughout Southeast Asia TODAY.
Pilots and aircrews in Vietnam and Laos were called upon to fly in many
dangerous circumstances, and they were prepared to be wounded, killed
captured. It probably never occurred to them that they could be abandoned
by the country they so proudly served.
When the last American troops left Southeast Asia in 1975, some 2500
Americans were unaccounted for. Reports received by the U.S. Government
since that time build a strong case for belief that hundreds of these
"unaccounted for" Americans are still alive and in captivity.
"Unaccounted for" is a term that should apply to numbers, not men. We
know if Lane and Neeld are alive or dead, but it seems certain that
alive. As long as even one American remains captive, we as a nation
these men our best effort to find them and bring them home. Until the
of men like Lane and Neeld are known, their families will wonder if
dead or alive - and why they were deserted.
"Electronic Rubbing" courtesy of The
VVMF--The Virtual Wall
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Maj, USAF, Ret
Proud Member of the POW/MIA
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Updated March 19, 2005