Verne George Donnelly

United States Navy
06 June 1932 - 08 December 1976
Marysville, CA
Panel 01W Line 073



Naval Aviator

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

Photo, left to right:
Verne Donnelly; Ken Russell; CAPT Tom Russell, CO USS AMERICA; CDR Herb Hope.
Courtesy Mike Munson

The database page for Verne George Donnelly

24 May 2001

Verne Donnelly was Executive Officer and then Commanding Officer of VA-35 while I was a member of the squadron from 1970-1972. Verne was an outstanding person, Navy Pilot, Naval Officer, and Skipper. He and Ken Buell were flying together the day they were shot down. I will never forget the day I received the news of their loss. Both were good friends and squadron mates. They are greatly missed by friends, family and shipmates.

A Note from The Virtual Wall

On September 17, 1972, CDR Verne G. Donnelly, pilot, and LCDR Kenneth R. Buell, B/N, launched from the USS America (CVA-66) on a combat mission targeted near Hai Duong, North Vietnam. As the aircraft was about eight miles west of that city, it went down. Both crewmen were declared Missing in Action.

Neither was acknowledged by the North Vietnamese as captured, and they did not return in the POW release of 1973. On February 5, 1991, the U.S. announced that remains returned by the Vietnamese had been positively identified as being those of Verne G. Donnelly. After 25 years, Donnelly was finally home. As of 25 May 2001, Ken Buell is still missing.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend,
Michael J Munson
1623 Cold Springs Rd, Weatherford, Tx 76088 
24 May 2001

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Channing Prothro, former CAP Marine
Last updated 09/16/2003