John Terence McDonnellMajor
A BTRY, 4TH BN, 77TH ARTY RGT, 101 ABN DIV
Army of the United States
14 December 1940 - 16 February 1977
Fort Worth, Texas
Panel 30W Line 058
The database page for John Terence McDonnell
On March 6, 1969, A Battery, 4/77th ARA, was called upon to take out enemy mortar installations on the north side of the Bach Ma mountain range in the Thua Tien Province of South Vietnam. Major Robert Graham requested volunteers as the Camp Eagle battery had already flown their missions that day. Cpt. John T. McDonnell and Lt. Ron Greenfield were assigned as the crew in the lead Cobra. McDonnell flew the craft for multiple runs with Greenfield manning the guns. At the refueling base, McDonnell gave the helm to Greenfield and took over the front seat manning the machine gun and rockets. The horseshoe-shaped valley held in the clouds that day forcing the aircraft to maintain a precarious altitude between the tree tops and the low cloud ceiling. While on their final rocket run, the Cobra took enemy fire and the last thing that Greenfield remembers is the stick going limp. He was extracted from the jungle roughly 24 hours after going in.
Thirteen years later McDonnell's name was engraved into the black marble of the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial on the 58th line of panel 30W. The cross prefix indicates that he is POW/MIA.
Please visit my personal web site which is dedicated to ascertaining his fate.
From his son,
A Note from The Virtual WallCPT John T. McDonnell and 1LT Ronald Greenfield were flying AH-1G tail number 67-15845 when they were shot down. During the search for the AH-1 a second aircraft, OH-6A (tail number 67-16025), was shot down with the loss of two men:
The "Remembrances" section of Mr. McDonnell's personal site, linked above, contains several entries from men who were there at the time and which provide first-hand information on the circumstances.
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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 08/10/2009