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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 158624
Last updated: 27 December 2019
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Date:31-OCT-1967
Time:02:00 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic A6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Grumman A-6A Intruder
Owner/operator:VMA(AW)-242 USMC
Registration: 152601
C/n / msn: I-149
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Canal Des Rapides Bridge, 15 miles E of Hanoi, North Vietnam -   Vietnam
Phase: Combat
Nature:Military
Departure airport:Da Nang AB, South Vietnam
Destination airport:
Narrative:
A-6A Instruder BuNo 152601/'DT-1' of US Marine Corps Squadron VMA(AW)-242 lost on combat operations early on the night of October 30/31 1967; target was the Canal des Rapides Bridge, 15 miles east of Hanoi, North Vietnam

The aircraft was the second plane in a two-plane flight. Mission was flown on the Red River approaching Hanoi. objective was the seeding of the river with bombs armed with MK-36 fuses. Flight plan called for a run-in altitude of 400 feet, Military Power setting.

Flight leader reports that the weather was slightly hazy with three to five miles of visibility. First aircraft encountered heavy Automatic Weapon fire and numerous missile firings near Gia Lam/Hai Doung area of Hanoi. They report that by the time the second plane arrived (same thirty to forty seconds later) there was a "solid wall" of AA from the decks to around thirty thousand feet.

Aircraft had delivered its ordnance and was commencing his egress when EA-6A giving ECM support reports that there was a large explosion observed in the area of the lost aircraft. Reason for explosion, whether from ground fire or ground contact, is undetermined. Both aircraft had full operating systems at the Initial Point.

Both crew - Captain Hugh Michael Fanning and Captain Stephen Jay Kott - were KIA. There are unsubstantiated reports that Captain Fanning ejected and survived only to die in North Vietnamese captivity. Captain Kott eventually was reclassified as Killed in Action/Body not Recovered while Fanning was continued in MIA status. Both men had been promoted to Major while in MIA status. None of the POWs repatriated in Feb/Mar 1973 knew anything about the two men, and on September 24 1976 the Secretary of the Navy approved a Presumptive Finding of Death for Major Fanning

On 17 July 1984 six boxes of human remains were repatriated. One of them was identified as the remains of Captain Fanning, and the other as those of Captain Kott. The remains were returned to their families and in each case were given burial with full military honors.

However, eleven months after burying her husband Mrs. Kathryn Fanning determined there were serious problems with the identification and obtained a court order directing exhumation and a separate evaluation. Two well-known scientists independently concluded that anthropological evaluation alone could not positively identify the remains as those of Major Fanning or anyone else, and the Marine Corps rescinded the identification.

In the early 1990s Mrs. Fanning and the Marine Corps agreed to mitochondrial DNA testing of the remains. DNA extracted from the remains matched precisely with DNA from Major Fanning's mother and sister.

Sources:

1. A-6 Intruder Units of the Vietnam War By Rick Morgan & Jim Laurier
2. http://www.joebaugher.com/navy_serials/thirdseries19.html
3. http://web.archive.org/web/20171103001143/http://www.ejection-history.org.uk:80/aircraft_by_type/a6_prowler.htm
4. http://www.virtualwall.org/df/FanningHM01a.htm
5. http://www.virtualwall.org/dk/KottSJ01a.htm


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
19-Aug-2013 08:24 Uli Elch Added
19-Aug-2013 08:42 Uli Elch Updated [Date, Registration, Cn, Location, Country, Narrative]
19-Aug-2013 09:20 Uli Elch Updated [Operator]
16-Mar-2016 20:22 Dr.John Smith Updated [Date, Time, Operator, Other fatalities, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
27-Dec-2019 15:13 stehlik49 Updated [Operator, Operator]

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