Wallace Addison Ford

Lieutenant Colonel
United States Air Force
13 June 1924 - 24 May 1968
Huntington, West Virginia
Panel 68E Line 002

7TH AF A-1 Skyraider 6TH SOS
USAF Command Pilot

Silver Star

DFC, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Air Medal, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Wallace Addison Ford

12 Nov 2006

Colonel Ford was like my military dad. I was responsible for his A-1 aircraft and ground support as a Spad team member with the 6th ACS.

From his crew chief.
E-Mail will be forwarded by the

A Note from The Virtual Wall

According to Hobson's "Vietnam Air Losses", LtCol Ford was flying A-1H tail number 52-137620 when he was shot down about 15 miles west of Tam Ky in Quang Tin Province - but the casualty file says LtCol Ford died in Quang Tri Province, well to the north of Tam Ky.

LtCol Ford was graduated from the US Military Academy with the Class of 1949, taking his commission in the Air Force. He is buried at West Point in Site 155, Section VII, of the US Military Academy Cemetery.

The A-1 Skyraider was developed by the Navy during World War II but didn't enter fleet service until after the war ended. It served very well as a ground attack aircraft in Korea and had a well-earned reputation as a sturdy, reliable aircraft capable of carrying a wide range of ordnance and was still in Navy service in the 1960s. As Vietnam heated up the Air Force recognized the value of the "Spad" and obtained a number of aircraft from the Navy. USAF A-1 training was conducted at Hurlburt Field, part of the Eglin AFB complex in the Florida panhandle. The photo below is of class "Express 12":

Back row: Capt John V. Duell; Maj John P. O'Gorman; Capt Donny D. Clemens; unknown; Capt John R. Gearhart; Maj Wallace A. Ford. Front row: Capt Oliver C. Chase; unknown; Capt Paul T. McClellan; Capt J.B. Ledbetter; unknown. Not pictured: Capt R. V. Arbuckle; Capt Don R. Hood; and Capt William H. Kyle.

Four men from Express 12 died in Vietnam:

  • Capt Oliver C. Chase, 1st ACS, A-1E 52-131414, Binh Dinh Province, 22 Jul 1965
  • Capt Don R. Hood, 602nd Ftr Sqdn, A-1E 52-132593, Binh Dinh Province, 02 Oct 1965
  • Capt Paul T. McClellan, 1st ACS, A-1E 52-132898, Pleiku Province, 14 Nov 1965
  • LtCol Wallace A. Ford, 606th ACS, A-1H 52-137620, Quang Tri Province, 24 May 1968
Captain McClellan was shot down while supporting the 1st Bn, 7th Cavalry during the fight at Landing Zone X-Ray ("We Were Soldiers"); his body was not recovered.

Perhaps oddly, more Air Force than Navy pilots died flying the Skyraider in Vietnam; as the Air Force increased its inventory of A-1s the Navy phased the aircraft out of service - it was judged not survivable in the much higher threat areas of North Vietnam where the Navy was flying.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
his crew chief.
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 12 Nov 2006
Last updated 11/17/2006