Wayne Bibbs

Private First Class
Army of the United States
14 June 1954 - 11 June 1972
Blue Island, Illinois
Panel 01W Line 040


Army Aircrew

Purple Heart, Air Medal, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Wayne Bibbs

27 Jan 2001

I wore Wayne's POW/MIA bracelet for many years, as many others did, but never thought too much about it. I finally found The Wall website, which isn't available anymore, and I would look over the names every night.

I remembered that I had a bracelet and went upstairs, and there it was in my jewelry box.

I am now obsessed with Vietnam Veterans. I was about the same age as many of the men that died over there, I feel like I didn't do anything.

I would like to hear from anyone who knew Wayne.

He was only 17, which I think must be one of the youngest to die in Vietnam.

Also, the date of his tour and his casualty date are the same, which doesn't seem right.

I wonder what happened to him and if any of his family could get in touch with me.

Thank You for your help,

Kathy Bittner
3389 N 2400 East Road
Fairbury, IL 61739

31 May 2004

Wayne Bibbs graduated from Dwight David Eisenhower High School in 1964.

This Memorial has been submitted by
his neighbors and friends who meet in the
Blue Island Forum on the internet.

May we always honor his memory and may he rest in peace.

From a suburban neighbor.
E-Mail will be forwarded by the

08 Aug 2007

Wayne Bibbs is my uncle. I am named after him as a memorial. However when my father and mother divorced, we lost contact with the Bibbs family. I was wondering if anyone had any leads to his family? I would really like to see the other side of my family.

From his nephew,
Wayne L. (Bibbs) Sutton

Notes from The Virtual Wall

In March 1972, the Vietnamese launched a three-pronged invasion of the South. One NVA force swept south across the DMZ, its goal apparently the conquest of the northern provinces and the seizure of Hue. A second NVA force drove from Laos into the Central Highlands, and a third effort involved a drive from Cambodia into provinces northwest of Saigon.

Fierce fighting ensued on all three fronts, with NVA success the greatest in the northern provinces. Fighting continued until June, when the North Vietnamese began withdrawing from some of their advanced positions, still holding considerable amounts of South Vietnamese territory in the northern provinces.

On June 11, 1972, CPT Arnold Holm, pilot, PFC Wayne Bibbs, gunner, and SP4 Robin Yeakley, observer, were aboard an OH-6A observation helicopter flying from Camp Eagle to the Northern Provinces of South Vietnam on a visual reconnaissance mission. The function of their "Loach" chopper was searching out signs of the enemy around two landing zones (LZ's). The OH-6 joined with AH-1G Cobra gunships as "Pink Teams" to screen the deployment of air cavalry troops. On this day, Holm's aircraft was monitoring an ARVN team insertion.

During the mission, Holm reported that he saw enemy living quarters, bunkers, and numerous trails. On his second pass over a ridge, at about 25 feet altitude, the aircraft exploded and burned. It was reported that smoke and white phosphorous grenades began exploding before the aircraft crashed. After the aircraft impacted with the ground, it exploded again. Other aircraft in the area received heavy anti-aircraft fire. No one was seen to exit the downed helicopter, nor were emergency radio beepers detected.

Another OH-6A (tail #67-16275), crewed by 1LT James R. McQuade and SP4 James E. Hackett, tried to enter the area of the crashed OH-6A, but encountered heavy fire. McQuade's aircraft was hit, and again the onboard munitions exploded prior to ground impact. The aircraft continued to burn after impact and neither crewmen left the ship before or after the crash.

No ground search was made for survivors or remains of either aircraft because of hostile fire in the area.

Five men from F Troop, 8th Cavalry, died in the two aircraft:

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
one who wears his MIA bracelet,
Kathy Bittner
3389 N 2400 East Road, Fairbury, IL 61739

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 27 Jan 2001
Last updated 03/16/2008