Howard Leroy Barden

United States Air Force
28 October 1933 - 31 January 1967
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
Panel 14E Line 099


USAF Navigator

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

The database page for Howard Leroy Barden

13 Feb 2007

I have been wearing the POW/MIA bracelet of Captain Howard L. Barden, USAF for the past 4 years. I am not related to Captain Barden but felt that this was a way that I could thank someone who might not have been recognized by anyone outside of direct family and hometown friends. I am a Second Lieutenant in the USAF and I am currently in Strike Navigator (WSO) training. I only hope that I can fill the shoes of Capt Barden and his fellow men through my service. I am eternally grateful for his sacrifice and will continue to honor his memory by wearing his bracelet on active duty, and more importantly, in the skies. If any family or friends come across this message it would be an honor to get in contact with you. My current email address is:

James Hayward, 2Lt, USAF

Notes from The Virtual Wall

The 12th Air Commando Squadron (later renamed the 12th Special Operations Squadron) flew UC-123B PROVIDER aerial spray aircraft for "Project Ranch Hand". Although "Ranch Hand" is best known today for spraying Agent Orange defoliant, the UC-123Bs also were used for spraying against the mosquitos that carried malaria. Spray missions were flown at 130 knots and as low as possible.

On 31 January 1967, a 12th ACS UC-123B was assigned a defoliant mission near the town of Sepone in Savannakhet Province, Laos. The aircraft had leveled off and begun spraying when it suddenly rolled inverted and crashed. It was determined that hostile fire had struck and destroyed the propellor on one of the aircraft's two engines; the sudden imbalance in engine thrust and the aircraft's low altitude combined to render the aircraft uncontrollable before ground impact.

Five men died in the crash:

  • Major Lloyd F. Walker, pilot;
  • Captain Howard L. Barden, navigator;
  • Captain Roy R. Kubley, copilot;
  • Captain Harvey Mulhauser, navigator; and
  • Airman 1st Class Ronald K. Miyazaki, flight mechanic.
Their remains have not been repatriated.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
one who wears his POW bracelet,
James Hayward

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 02 Jan 2006
Last updated 07/15/2007