Roberts, Gerald Ray, LCDR

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Last Rank
Lieutenant Commander
Last Primary NEC
131X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Pilot
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1964-1965, 131X, USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
Service Years
1955 - 1965
Lieutenant Commander
Lieutenant Commander

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Sheila Rae Myers, HM3 to remember Roberts, Gerald Ray, LCDR.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Smiley, TX
Last Address
San Marcos, TX

Casualty Date
Dec 02, 1965
Hostile-Body Not Recovered
Air Loss, Crash - Land
Vietnam, North (Vietnam)
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Buried at Sea - N/A, Pacific Ocean
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

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 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
On 2 December 1965, LCDR Gerald R. Roberts, flying an A-1H SKYRAIDER (BuNo 139755), launched from USS Bon Homme Richard to conduct armed reconnaissance over North Vietnam. His flight's mission was to search out and destroy troops, military convoys, road bridges, supply barges, or similar targets of military value.

Roberts' flight spotted a small road bridge along Highway 1, which runs more or less parallel to the coast. The village of Ky Anh was about 6 miles NNW of the target, which was about 39 miles NNW of Dong Hoi and some 60 miles southeast of Vinh.

On his third pass against the bridge, LCDR Roberts crashed. Although intense ground fire had been present it was unclear if Roberts had been hit or if he inadvertently flew into the ground. In either case, there was no evidence that he escaped the aircraft before impact or survived the crash ... no parachute was sighted, nor were any radio signals heard. The crash site was in a densely populated area on the edge of forested mountains about 10 or 12 miles inland.

Ground fire precluded a close inspection of the wreckage. On termination of the SAR effort LCDR Roberts was declared as Killed in Action/Body Not Recovered.

Joint US-SRV investigations in 1993 and 1994 obtained information from local witnesses and recovered aircrew equipment and human remains from the wreckage. On 04 October 1994, the Vietnamese government turned over two sets of remains. On 13 April 1995, one set was identified as Marine Sergeant John F. Burns, who was captured 25 December 1967 and who reportedly died in captivity two years later. On 10 October 1996, almost 31 years after he was shot down, the second set of remains was identified as those of Lieutenant Commander Gerald Roberts.

At the time of his loss, Attack Squadron 196 was based at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington. In 1997, at the request of his family, Lieutenant Commander Roberts was buried at sea from the carrier USS Carl Vinson in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, which forms the passage joining Whidbey Island with the Pacfic Ocean. He has a military marker in his memory at Ft
Rosecrans National Cemetery.

Service number: 611488

The information contained in this profile was compiled from various internet sources.

 Tributes from Members  
The Most Honorable Mission posted by Burgdorf, Tommy (Birddog, TWS Memorial "A" Team), FC2 432
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 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 Duty Stations
School Assignments - StaffSchool Assignments - StaffNAS San DiegoVA-196 Main Battery
USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
  1955-1955, 6302, Navy Pre-Flight School
  1956-1956, 6302, Advance Flight Training, NAS Corpus Cristi
  1956-1957, 6302, NAS San Diego
  1964-1965, 131X, VA-196 Main Battery
  1964-1965, 131X, USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1964-1964 Vietnam War/Advisory Campaign (62-65)/Gulf of Tonkin Incident
  1964-1965 Vietnam War/Advisory Campaign (62-65)
 Colleges Attended 
University of Texas at AustinSan Diego State University
  1951-1954, Southwest University
  1951-1954, University of Texas at Austin
  1960-1961, San Diego State University
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  War and service memorials2
  Aug 12, 1955, Graduates pre-flight school1
  Dec 13, 1956, Ensign Serving With Carrier Airborne Squad1
  Oct 16, 1957, Promoted to Lieutenant Junior Grade
  Jun 01, 1960, Promoted to Lieutenant
  Dec 02, 1965, Vietnam War Miliatry Casualties
  Dec 06, 1965, Centexan Shot Down By Viets1
  Oct 04, 1994, Remains repatriated
  Oct 10, 1996, Remains identified
  Oct 31, 1996, Remians of 9 US Servicemen Returned1
  May 24, 2012, General Photos
 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans MemorialThe National Gold Star Family RegistryUnited States Navy Memorial American Battle Monuments Commission
  2012, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  2013, The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2017, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2018, American Battle Monuments Commission
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