Barber, Thomas David, ADRAN

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Last Rating/NEC Group
Aviation Machinist's Mate Reciprocating Engine Mechanic
Primary Unit
1967-1968, ADR-0000, USS Yorktown (CVS-10)
Service Years
1967 - 1968
ADR-Aviation Machinist's Mate Reciprocating Engine Mechanic

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Michael D. Withers (Mike), OSCS to remember Barber, Thomas David, ADRAN.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Aurora, CA
Last Address
Aurora, CA

Casualty Date
Mar 17, 1968
Hostile, Died while Missing
Lost At Sea-Unrecovered
South China Sea
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial - Honolulu, Hawaii
Wall/Plot Coordinates
45E 007

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

Cold War Medal Gulf of Tonkin Yacht Club Cold War Veteran Cold War Veteran

 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans MemorialThe National Gold Star Family RegistryUnited States Navy Memorial
  1968, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  2013, The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2013, United States Navy Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Ribbon Bar
Air Crew Wings

 Duty Stations
VS-23 Black CatsUSS Yorktown (CVS-10)
  1967-1968, ADR-0000, VS-23 Black Cats
  1967-1968, ADR-0000, USS Yorktown (CVS-10)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1967-1968 Vietnam War
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
As Aircrewman, Thomas D. Barber was killed in the following events. His body was not recovered. 

On 17 March 1968, Cmdr. Donald R. Hubbs, pilot; Lt. JG Lee D. Benson, co-pilot; AN Thomas D. Barber, reciprocating engine mechanic; and AX2 Randall J. Nightingale, ASW technician, comprised the crew of an S2E aircraft. At 2100 hours the flight launched from the deck of the USS Yorktown on a five-hour surface/sub-surface surveillance flight over the Gulf of Tonkin. Their call sign during this mission was "Abilene 10." 
Following take-off, Cmdr. Hubbs radioed "mission able," meaning everything was all right, and continued on the mission. Approximately 40 minutes later the aircraft reported "ops normal" with seven hours of fuel remaining. Between 55 and 60 minutes after launch, the shipboard controller noticed that he had lost radar contact with Abilene 10. The last radar image was approximately 61 miles from the Yorktown, 35 miles due east of a cluster of small islands known as Hon Nghi Son, and 41 miles due east of mainland North Vietnam. This was also 55 miles southeast of Thanh Hoa and 67 miles northeast of Vinh. 
Following the loss of radar contact and communication with Abilene 10 by Yorktown, every effort was made to reestablish contact. At the same time, other aircraft in the air were vectored to the general area of Abilene 10's last known position to conduct an immediate visual search of the suspected area of loss. Once it was determined the aircraft was probably lost, all four men aboard Abilene 10 were initially listed Missing in Action. When no sighting was made during the immediate examination of the area of last contact, a full search and rescue operation was initiated. 
During the next four days, Yorktown aircraft visually searched the loss area for any sign of the aircraft and its crew. On 20 March, one of the SAR aircraft spotted a small amount of aircraft wreckage and successfully recovered it in the vicinity of the Tracker's last known position. Later this wreckage was positively correlated to an S2E aircraft. 
Under the conditions of Abilene 10's loss, the Navy began changing the status of each of the aircrew from missing to Killed in Action/Body Not Recovered. Thomas D. Barber was the first to have his status changed on 18 March 1968. The second was Lee D. Benson on 21 March 1968. Donald R. Hubbs and Randall J. Nightingale both had their status changed on 12 July 1968. 
On 20 July 1968, a sizable section of the starboard wing from the S2E was unexpectedly found. No other sign of the aircraft or its crew was ever discovered. Further, the US Navy was never able to determine if the aircraft developed mechanical problems or if it was brought down by enemy fire. 
Not Specified
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