In Memoriam
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"In Memoriam" This page is reserved for Honoring and Remembering All Our Vapper Shipmates who have passed on. As there is no way to do this, to adequately say what each of us feel, we will just offer the following postings. These will be posted as best we can in the following order. Respectfully A: VAP Combat Losses, B: Losses during VAP Service, C: Losses during US Navy Service, D: Vappers who have passed-on after their military service.

Vappers, Please send any corrections, additions, deletions or suggestions to: Vapper Bruce


This is an incomplete list of Personnel Losses
Bois-Clair, Ronald
ADJ2
VAP-62
25 Aug 1967
Chaffee, R.B.
LCDR
NASA
27 Jan 1967
Dennison, J.R."Dick"
CDR
VAP-61
01 Jan 1968
Dotson, Gene
LT
VAP-62
24 Feb1960
Faulkner, Charles E.
LTjg
VAP-62
24 Feb1960
Frohne, Charles
CDR
VAP-62
29 Jul 1960
Gierak, G. G.
LTjg
VAP-61
13 Jun 1966
Glanville, John
LCDR
VAP-61
13 Jun 1966
Grady, Edward
CDR
VAP-61
15 Nov 1966
Hanley, T.H.
LTjg
VAP-61
01 Jan 1968
Herrin, Henry
CPO
VAP-61
01 Jan 1968
Hood, Charles
AQB3
VAP-62
28 Jun 1964
Jacobs, Edward
CDR
VAP-62
25 Aug 1967
Klein, Peter
Civilian
VAP-61
15 Nov 1966
Lambton, Bennie
CPO
VAP-61
13 Jun 1966
Lew Sanders
Civilian
VAP-61
1958
Lindbloom, C.D.
PH1
VAP-61
20 Aug 1968
McCright, Robert
LT
VAP-62
28 Jun 1964
Paganessi, R.B.
LTjg
VAP-62
29 Jul 1960
Perisho, G.S.
LCDR
VA-75
31 Dec 1967
Schomer, R.V.
PHC
VAP-62
29 Jul 1960
Vaughan, R.R.
LCDR
VAP-61
14 Oct 1967
Zavocky, James
LTjg
VAP-62
25 Aug 1967
(We need a lot of help to make this list complete and accurate)

Lost VAP-61 & VAP-62 Aircraft
VAP-62
144836
24 FEB 1960
VAP-62
144845
29 JUL 1960
VAP-61
144839
07 SEP 1961
VAP-62
144829
28 JUN 1964
VAP-61
144842
13 JUN 1966
VAP-61
144830
15 Nov 1966
VAP-61
144828
16 JUN 1967
VAP-61
144835
25 AUG 1967
VAP-61
144844
14 OCT 1967
VAP-61
144847
01 JAN 1968
VAP-62
144837
?? APR 1969
VAP-61
144826 
08 AUG 1969
(If anyone wants to write a Memoriam for this page, Please do and send it to us)

RA-3B 144835

On the night of 25 August 1967, RA-3B, 144835, from VAP-61, on a night Infrared Photo Reconnaissance mission took off from DaNang Air Base in South Vietnam. Near the coast of North Vietnam, 144835 disappeared, nothing was ever found. The three Naval Aircrewmen were eventually declared "Killed in Action/Body Not Recovered". They were from VAP-62, NAS Jacksonville, Florida, temporarily assigned to VAP-61 to augment aircrew. They were: Cdr. Edward James Jacobs, Jr., Pilot, age 39, born 13 July 1928, Mount Vernon, WA, 20 yrs. US Navy, LTjg James J. Zavocky, Photo/Nav, age 25, born 6 Jan 1942, Parma, OH, 5 yrs. US Navy, Ronald Alan Bois-Clair, ADJ2, Photographer/3rd crew, age 28, born 7 Dec 1938, Tucson, AZ, 10 yrs. US Navy. Their names are still together on Panel 25E on the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C..

(Silk painting from outside the gate at Nas Atsugi, Japan)
(submitted by: Bruce Haase, AMH3, Plane Captain 144835, VAP-61, 1962-1963)

RA-3B 144842

(photo above and memoriam below submitted by: cdr jim "newk' newcomb, pilot, vap-61, 1965-1967, friend of those above, this photo hangs on the wall of jim's home)

On 13 June 1966, VAP-61, RA-3B, 144842, took off from NAS Cubi Point, Philippines heading to North Vietnam. It's mission was to do a night, low-level, photo flash-cartridge run on route 15, west of Cape Mui Ron. 144842 Was shot down, the aircrew were declared M.I.A. and were never recovered. These US Navy Aircrewmen were: LCDR John Turner Glanville, Jr., Pilot, born 18 Mar 1934, Mendam, NJ, LTjg George Gregory Gierak, Jr., Photo/Nav, born 25 July 1940, Springfield, NY, Bennie Richard Lambton, PTC, Photographer/3rd Crew, born 7 Aug 1930, Indianapolis, IN.. .........They were the first crew lost from VAP-61 in Vietnam.......... Their names are still together on Panel 8E of The Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C.

Bennie Richard Lambton
(photo from: Larry Harrison)

RA-3B 144847

On New Years Day, 1 Jan 1968, VAP-61, RA-3B, Skywarrior number 144847, on a detachment from NAS Agana, Guam to NAS Cubi Point, Philippines and the USS Oriskany was catapulted off towards North Vietnam. They were on a Night Infrared Reconnaissance Mission, while over land they were hit by an unknown weapon and turned toward the sea and their ship. Thirty miles off the coast they went down. There were no survivors. The Aircrew were: CDR James Richard "Dick" Dennison, Pilot, born 28 Feb 34, Rochester, NY ; LTjg Terence Higgens Hanley, Photo/Nav, born 16 Mar 42, Gadiner, ME ; Henry Howard Herrin, Jr, PHCS, born 18 Mar 33, West Springfield, MA. They were never recovered. Their names are together on Panel 33E, Vietnam Memorial Wall, Washington D.C.

(submitted by: Bruce Haase AMH#, VAP-61, 1961-1963)

RA-3B 144829
US Navy Photo

On the morning of 28 June 64, VAP-62, RA-3B, 144829, took off from NAS Jacksonville on a personnel transportation mission. On board were LT Robert McCright, pilot, recently transferred-in from NAS Sanford. LTjg Cal Larsen, Photo/Nav, and Charles Hood AQB3, 3rd seat crewman. After an uneventful 1.3 hour flight to Langley AFB, Norfolk, VA, Navigator Larsen got out at the end of the runway. Larsen was to attend a "Deep Sea Survival Course" there. 144829 then took off, with Charles Hood now in the 2nd seat, headed to Wright-Patterson AFB, Dayton, OH, to pick up LT Roger Jenkins and return to Jacksonville. McCright and Hood never got to see Ohio. They were climbing out on auto-pilot. Apparently the lower hatch was not seated properly, and the aircraft did not pressurize correctly. The crew lost consciousness and died from hypoxia. Air traffic controllers noticed something amiss. One or two F9F's were sent to investigate. They found the crew unconscious. 144829 then flew on at over 40,000 feet until it ran out of fuel. The aircraft crashed about 25 miles SW of Seymour-Johnson AFB in North Carolina. Investigation showed that although the wings were ripped off the A3, the cockpit/fuselage were in a slightly-damaged condition, speculating that if the crew would have been alive when the crash occurred they would have survived.

(submitted by: Roger Eidenschink, contributors; Jerry Pizzo, John Defiore, Cal Larsen)

RA-3B 144830
(photo courtesy of: GETA-O)

On 15 Nov 1966, RA-3B 144830 of VAP-61, Took off from NAS Cubi Point (?), headed for Guam. Far out at sea the aircraft encountered "Fuel Transfer Problems". At 6000 feet the three man crew bailed out. The crew was CDR Edward L. Grady, Pilot, LTjg Richard Slovacek, P/N, and Civilian Tech. Rep. Peter W. Klein in the 3rd seat. After 5 hours LTjg Slovacek was rescued. CDR Ed Grady and Tech Rep Pete Klein were never found. The search went on for days, hundreds of flight hours and thousands of photographs, before it was called off.

(contributor: Wayne Green, VAP-62 augmentation crew.... more info needed)

CDR Hollingshead, CDR Frohne
(L-R) CDR Hollingshead, CDR Frohne

29 Jul 1960, USS Franklin Delano Roosevelt, VAP-62's new A3D-2P Skywarrior's are doing CQ's (carrier qualifications), the big aircraft are so new, there is a lot to learn yet. VAP-62's Commanding Officer, CDR Charles T Frohne jr, Pilot, LTjg R.B. Paganessi, P/N, and R.V. Schomer, CPO, 3rd crewman, have made a few traps and cats (arrested landings & catapult assisted take-offs). On their next trap, disaster strikes, the tailhook point grabs the arresting cable and the point shatters. The huge A3 has been slowed too much, they don't have enough speed to fly and they have too much to stop. They slowly fall off the angle deck, the fuselage broke and the cockpit flooded. All three drowned, LTjg Paganessi might have made it out but his baro-release lanyard was still attached and tangled him. A rescue swimmer got to them but, couldn't save anyone. Although the plane floated for quite a while, with the fuselage broken and the cockpit under water, it was hopeless. The deaths of these men went to make the A3 a safer plane. The hook point was re-designed, it was re-torqued after each trap and tossed after 10 traps. The tailhook itself was tossed after 100 landings. The baro-release lanyard was not to be hooked up below a specified altitude. These improvements came at a high price.

(submitted by: Dick Pitman VAP-62)

RA-3B, 144844

On 14 Oct 1967 VAP-61, RA-3B, 144844 from NAS Cubi Point, Philippines was on a day photo reconnaissance mission over Vietnam. While over North Vietnam they were hit by hostile fire. The aircrew were LCDR Robert Reddington Vaughan, Pilot, born 26 Oct 1931, Los Angeles, CA. LTjg Moser, P/N and Jim Shaw ADJ2, 3rd seater. Upon taking fire the A3 turned towards the sea. As they crossed the coastline they radioed "Feet Wet". It was their last transmission. Approximately 10 miles to sea all three bailed out of their stricken aircraft. Shaw and Moser were rescued. LCDR R.R. Vaughan was not found, he was eventually declared K.I.A.. LCDR Robert R. Vaughan's name is on panel 28E of The Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.

(Please send us any more information you know for this Memoriam) 


1400 Hours, 20 Aug 1968, DaNang Air Base, South Vietnam, a VAP-61 RA-3B took off with five aboard on a R & R flight to Bangkok. Charles David Lindbloom PH1, born 05 Jan 1943, NY state, home in Atlanta, GA, was in the 3rd seat. At approximately 25,000 feet the Skywarrior went out of control and approached a near inverted attitude. The Photo/Nav tried to get the Pilots attention, but he seemed unresponsive. The P/N then blew down the escape chute and activated the bail-out warning horn. The P/N, Lindbloom and one passenger from the camera compartment bailed out. Two chutes were observed. Two men were recovered. At approx. 10,000 feet the pilot recovered control of the A3, he flew it back to DaNang. In the investigation it was discovered Chuck did not have his baro-release lanyard hooked to the aircraft. Chuck Lindbloom's body was never found. The name of Charles David Lindbloom PH1 is on panel 47W of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.

(submitted by:Larry Wittmayer, ISC, VAP-62, 3rd seat crew, " Chuck was a good guy, helpful and considerate, Chuck helped me become an aircrewman")


A3D-2P Columbian Mountains
VAP-62, A3D-2P, in Columbian Mountains, Pilot LT Roger B. Chaffee, 1961

Lt. Roger Bruce Chaffee arrived at VAP-62 in 1960 after having completing the first class at VAH-3 at NAS Sanford of first tour pilots to check out in the A3D. Flying the Whale was usually reserved for those more experienced Senior Naval Aviators who had “lots of flight time”. 

Roger was raised in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area, became a Eagle Scout, attended Grand Rapids Central High School graduating in 1953. He successfully pursued a Engineering Degree, initially at Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, then transferred in 1954 to Purdue University. It was at Purdue that he met Martha Horn who had been a Homecoming Queen at Purdue, and was from Oklahoma City, OK. They were married in August 1957. They had two children, Sheryl, who was later in adult life to become an Administrative Specialist in Safety and Mission Assurance at Cape Canaveral, and a son Stephen. 

He commenced U.S. Naval Flight Training in Pensacola, Fl. receiving his Wings of Gold in early 1959. In 1960 Roger reported aboard Heavy Photographic Squadron-Sixty Two. One of his duties was in the Maintenance Department as Quality Control Officer where he wrote the squadron’s Quality Control Manual. This was new and heady stuff in these days of Naval Aviation. 

During some of Roger’s “spare time” when he wasn’t water skiing at Camp Blanding on weekends with his friends and family Roger devoted time to some of the enlisted members of the squadron who wanted to learn to fly. He arranged with the sole Flight Instructor at nearby Herlong Field that if he and another VAP pilot were to fly with these folks for eight hours and get them ready for a “safe for solo” check ride would he sign them off. He agreed and using an approved flight syllabus that the instructor “OKed”, Roger, using a Piper J-3 Cub, that the men had purchased, successfully got all of them thru the “safe for solo” phase of the training. 

Roger was extremely well liked while in VAP-62 and endured some kidding at his expense. During a full dress inspection in preparation for an Administrative and Material Inspection Roger’s new white uniform dress shoes had not had a coat of white polish applied prior to his wearing them. They were slightly yellowed having most likely been on a shelf at the Navy Exchange for a while. The CO noticed that, of course, and promptly assigned Roger the nickname as “The Beaver”, as in “Eager Beaver”. These shoes were prominently hung in the front of the Ready Room for all to see! 

During another inspection, the then squadron Maintenance Officer, who was known for his pranks, took Roger’s Navy Ceremonial Sword that Martha had given to him with his name engraved on it for graduation and commissioning and took it to the Airframe’s Shop grinder and cut it in two just behind the hilt. When the order for “Officers Draw Swords” was given, Roger in a very military manner drew his sword and all that he had in his hand was the sword handle. This did not set well with Roger due to the sentiment that was attached to this sword. A replacement was provided, but it was never the same.

During the summer of 1961 when the Mercury and Gemini Manned Space program was just getting off the ground Roger deployed with Det 19 of VAP-62 to Pt Lyautey, Morocco to fly photographic missions in the European and Mediterranean areas of operation. It was during this time that one of Roger’s aviation challenges was met. While flying out of Brize Norton RAF base in England, Roger’s RA3B developed a hydraulic fluid leak in the port Air Turbine Motor (ATM) Compartment. The spraying hydraulic fluid ignited causing an in flight fire, but Roger was able to successfully isolate the damage, land the plane and provide safety for his crew and himself there by saving a valuable resource and their lives! The aircraft was repaired and then returned to service with the 3-plane detachment!

Roger was selected as one of thirteen pilots for the Astronaut Program on October 18,1963. This was to be the 3 man Apollo Earth Orbit Mission. Roger was teamed with Gus Grissom and Ed White for this flight. A great deal of preparation and training was to be completed before this monumental event was to occur. On January 27,1967 on launch pad at Complex 34 during a “Plugs Out Test” and at time that the Apollo I Space Capsule was filled with a full 100 percent oxygen environment a fire ensued. Roger remained strapped into his position attempting to transmit emergency messages to the Blockhouse.

All of the Astronauts were to perish in this fire.

They are interred at Arlington National Cemetery.


Eidenshink, Nickell, Perisho
Eidenshink, Nickell, Perisho

Ltjg Sam Perisho's first sea duty squadron was with VAP-62 at NAS Jacksonville, FL, where he was a well qualified, young Photo / Navigator. Sam often flew with Pilot LT Herb Nickell and 3rd crewman, PH3 Roger Eidenschink. Sam married Ruth Ann after he left VAP-62 when he was stationed at the Pentagon in Washington, DC. They were to have a son.

LCDR Gordon Samuel "Sam" Perisho, Bombardier/Navigator with the A6A's of VA-75's "Sunday Punchers", along with Pilot, LCDR John D. Peace III, while operating from USS Kitty Hawk were assumed to have been hit by a SAM becoming the 62nd and final victim of this missile in 1967 and became MIA on 31 Dec 1967.

Sam was born in Panama (Canal Zone) on 07 Mar 1939. His home of record is Quincy, Illinois. Sam and his Pilot, Jack Peace, were on a daylight raid, to strike a cave storage area, 3 miles North East of Vinh in North Vietnam. Although they were experiencing radio problems they elected to complete their mission. Their A6A was tracked on radar until 1431 hours. On 09 Oct 1975 their status was changed to Killed In Action . Their remains were not recovered.

LCDR Gordon Samuel Perisho's name is on Panel 33E of The Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.

("To Sam, Our Friend", Bill Edwards, Roger Eidenschink, Herb Nickell, Dick Pitman,VAP-62)

Flight Orders

Vappers, These are the Flight Orders for my last Transpac with Vap-61. I thought you might remember some of the people on this page. It was signed by Mr. Stewart also my friend PH1 Herrin, he was on my bird (911) when it was shot down 1 Jan 68. Him and his crew came by my house when I was living in Sunnyvale and had a couple. I was saddened when I heard of my plane getting shot down and even more that I lost my good friend.

(from: P.M. "Dobie" Jimmerson, Birmingham, AL)

VAP-61 Has had two civilians, "Chicago Aerial, Tech Reps" die in aircraft crashes. Rep. Pete Klein in an A3 with CDR Ed Grady and Rep. Lew Sanders in an AJ Savage in 1958. Quite a sad and unusual coincidence.

(remembered by Bob Skillen)

Exact Date Unknown, 1960, VFP-63 has a Detachment aboard the USS Midway. When the Midway's Westpac cruise is over, the VFP-63 Det. will not return with the ship and airgroup to the west coast. The F8U-1P Crusader, Photo Birds and their support group will off-load at Okinawa and transport to NAS Agana, Guam. There, they will join the Composite Photo Recon Squadron, VCP-61. The Crusaders are sent to Guam, the rest of the Det. Personnel will follow aboard a Marine R5D. 

For reasons unknown, the R5D crashed at sea, approximately 125 miles Southeast of NAS Naha, Okinawa, where they had taken off. A few of the Det. were not aboard the flight. In all 27 enlisted and one officer from VFP-63 along with a number of Marines perished in the sea. There were no survivors, no bodies, no reason, no aircraft wreckage. Only bits and pieces of debris.

Some of their family members had already been moved to Guam. It was a terrible tragedy. Some say this crash led to the breakup of the composite squadron concept.

(contributors: Tom Mcclain and Mike Setzer more info sought)

We have just heard of a VAP-62, AJ-2P Savage, that was involved in a mid-air collision with a F-8U Crusader near NAS Cecil Field, FL, in 1958 or 1959. The four VAP-62 crew perished. That's all we know.

(Please send in any additional information)

24 Feb 1960 RA-3B BuNum 144836 from VAP-62 at NAS Jacksonville was Lost in Flight. LT Gene E. Dotson, Pilot, LTjg Charles E. Faulkner, P/N, and Robert Gaudreau PH1, 3rd crewman, crashed at sea. LT Dotson and LTjg Faulkner lost their lives, 3rd crewman Robert Gaudreau was rescued.

(Please send us any information about this crash)

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