Fullerton, Frank Eugene, CDR

Fallen
 
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Last Rank
Commander
Last Primary NEC
131X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Pilot
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1968-1968, 131X, USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
Service Years
1955 - 1968
Commander
Commander

 Last Photo   Personal Details 


Home State
Georgia
Georgia
Year of Birth
1934
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Tommy Burgdorf (Birddog), FC2 to remember Fullerton, Frank Eugene, CDR.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Jonesboro,GA
Last Address
Jonesboro,GA

Casualty Date
Jul 27, 1968
 
Cause
Hostile-Body Not Recovered
Reason
Air Loss, Crash - Land
Location
Vietnam, North (Vietnam)
Conflict
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
50W 017/ Section MH Grave 298

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 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans MemorialUnited States Navy Memorial The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2013, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  2014, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2014, The National Gold Star Family Registry

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 Ribbon Bar
Naval Aviator Wings

 
 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
VA-93 Blue Blazers/RavensUSS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
  1968-1968, 131X, VA-93 Blue Blazers/Ravens
  1968-1968, 131X, USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1968-1968 Vietnam War
 Other News, Events and Photographs
 
  Jul 27, 2012, General Photos
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
On 27 July 1968, then Lt. Cmdr. Frank E. Fullerton was the pilot of an A4F Skyhawk (serial# 154182) that launched from the deck of the USS Bon Homme Richard as the flight leader in a flight of two on a night road reconnaissance mission over North Vietnam. As the flight crossed the coastline, Lt. Cmdr. Fullerton placed his wingman in a one to two mile trail position and 2000 feet above himself. Three to four minutes after crossing the coastline the flight leader spotted a series of lights on the ground and assessed them to be trucks traveling south along a primary north-south road used by the North Vietnamese to transport men and material through the Mu Gia Pass and onto the infamous Ho Chi Minh Trail.

At 0400 hours, he radioed his wingman reporting multiple moving targets and stating that he was going to make a bomb run on them. The wingman saw two bombs detonate on the ground, then observed an orange-red fireball close to the bomb hits, which he believed was a secondary explosion. Further, the second explosion threw burning debris high into the air. After the wingman made his bomb run on the target, he made his first radio call to Lt. Cmdr. Fullerton in order to form-up on his flight leader. When no contact could be established, the wingman radioed the onsite command and control aircraft to assist him in making contact with Lt. Cmdr. Fullerton. The command aircraft was not able to make voice contact either. However, while it was orbiting some 12 miles north of the target area, its crew received an "IFF radio mode III squawk" that the crew believed was a signal from Lt. Cmdr. Fullerton. The radar return faded at 20 miles before a positive identification could be made. Search and rescue (SAR) efforts were immediately initiated, but none of the aircraft participating in the search could find any trace of the downed pilot. At the time the formal search effort was terminated, Frank Fullerton was listed Missing in Action.

The area of loss was located in the forested mountains approximately 4 miles northeast of a single-track railroad line that generally ran from the northwest to the southeast and curving through the mountains from Vinh to Dong Hoi. The primary road intersected the railroad line 4 miles northeast of the loss location as well as being approximately 17 miles south of the major hub city of Ha Kinh, 29 miles north-northeast of the Mu Gia Pass, 44 miles south of Vinh and 62 miles northwest of Dong Hoi, Ha Tinh Province, North Vietnam.
   
Comments/Citation
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