Gary Russell LaBohnSergeant First Class
CCN, MACV-SOG, 5TH SF GRP
Army of the United States
28 December 1942 - 20 March 1979
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The database page for Gary Russell LaBohn
"On 30 November 1968, Major Samuel K. Toomey, 1st Lt. Raymond C. Stacks, then Sgt. Richard A. Fitts, Sgt. Arthur E. Bader, Cpl. Gary R. LaBohn, SSgt. Klaus D. Scholz, and Cpl. Michael H. Mein comprised a seven-man, all-US reconnaissance team who were passengers aboard a South Vietnamese Air Force CH34 helicopter, call sign "King Bee." The team was being inserted into Oscar Eight on a mid-day Project Eldest Son mission to build a false ammunition cache. In addition to the special operations team, the helicopter was crewed by an allied pilot and co-pilot, and carried a dozen cases of 82mm mortar ammunition.
"The insertion helicopter was part of a larger flight of aircraft that included attack helicopters as escorts. Major Toomey, the team leader, was assigned to Armor Headquarters, MACV while the rest of the team members were assigned to MACV-SOG, Command and Control North (CCN).
" At approximately 1200 hours, the King Bee helicopter was flying at roughly 4,000 feet when it was struck by a single 37mm anti-aircraft artillery (AAA) round fired from a concealed NVA AAA battery. Other flight members watched in horror as the transport helicopter caught fire, went into a spin, crashed and exploded into the dense jungle on the south side of a rugged mountain just north of Route 9, a main infiltration route used by the NVA. According to one witness, "There wasn't anything bigger than a cigarette butt that hit the ground. It just went off like a nuke.""
Taken from the
Additional information is on the
A memorial initiated by his great-nephew,
You are not forgotten. I still wear the bracelet and never take it off. Countless people ask about it and I tell them your story.
Thank you for your sacrifice.
I bought a bracelet with Gary's name in the early 70's. I remember it had an address for his family because I wrote to them and received a letter from his sister. I wore the bracelet until I became allergic to it. I have several, they are all still hanging next to my mirror in my bedroom along with the picture of Gary that is posted here. I picked his name because the day he went missing I could remember exactly what I was doing, accepting a promise ring from a guy who had been back fron Vietnam for about a year. I have been to the Wall and rubbed his name, I saw his name on the Special Forces monument at Fort Bragg, I sent his picture to a friend of his who said he was his best friend but didn't have one picture of him. Gary has been a part of my life for a very long time. He will be in my heart always.
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 17 Jun 2002
Last updated 08/10/2009