Skyhawks in Vietnam


Surface to Air Missile.



See VA-23 page for details.

See VA-192 page for details;

Navy's Tonkin Gulf Club Marine Skyhawk Units In-country TARGETS Texas Tech University's Vietnam Center


The A-4 Skyhawk ( A-4B, A-4C, A-4E, A-4F and TA-4F ) carried the battle to the enemy for the U.S. Navy and Marines.

A-4 Skyhawk Pilots were in on the action from the very first air strikes in Vietnam, to the very last days of the conflict.

Total Navy Air Losses = 854 Aircraft, 575 Fatalities and 144 POWs.
Of these, 271 (31.7%) were Skyhawks, with 98 (17%) Skyhawk Fatalities and 48 (33%) Skyhawk POWs.

Total Marine Air Loses = 271 Aircraft, 241 Fatalities and 12 POWs.
Of these, 91 (33.6%) were Skyhawks, with 32 (13.3%) Skyhawk Fatalities and 1 (8.3%) Skyhawk POW.

Skyhawk losses to MiGs = 1, to SAMs = 32. Total A-4s lost in combat was 195.

As one would expect statistics vary based upon source. One claims 282 lost during the conflict, 195 of them in combat. But the above stats appear to be the most accurate.

First Skyhawk loss was A-4C 149578 from VA-144 aboard the USS Constellation, struck by AAA on 05AUG64, flown by LTJG Everett Alvarez who became the first, and longest held, POW of the conflict.

Final Navy Skyhawk loss was A-4F 155021 from VA-212 aboard the USS Hancock, struck by AAA on 06SEPT72, the pilot, LT W.F. Pear was rescued.

Final Skyhawk loss was A-4E BuNo 151099 on 26 September 1972, when USMC pilot Captain James_P._Walsh USMC of VMA-211 flying from his land base at Bien Hoa Air Base, was struck by AAA and was forced to eject. He became a POW and was released on 12 February 1973.

Skyhawk Aviators

Highly decorated for their courage,
while under fire and as POWs

2 Medal of Honor
7 Navy Cross
Numerous Silver Stars, DFCs,
Purple Hearts and Air medals.

VSD = DaNang?
VBH = Bien Hoa
PMB = Clark or Cubi?
NCP = Cubi non-official?
DAG = DaNang non-official?
PMK = Clark or Sangley?

DaNang: ID=DNG, ch 77, area GCI was Panama

Medal Of Honor
Medal Of Honor

(Click for details)

Navy Cross

(Click for details)

Silver Star
(click for details)

Distinguished Flying Cross

Purple Heart

Air Medal

POW Medal

Vietnam Service

RVN Campaign


Enlisted personnel played a supportive role (maintenance) in the Skyhawk's participation in Vietnam. Due to the inherent dangers of carrier flight deck operations, and in-theater land based combat ops, they did not serve without incurring losses.

Some known Blue Jacket and Leatherneck OPS Losses:
Blue Shirt Moody CVA-63 DEC62 Blown Over-board at sea just before his 18th birthday.

T. Prezorski Killed -Blown Over-board at sea.

MAG12: loses

August 24, 1965: LCPL Harold J. Brazen, MABS-12, LCPL Ronald C. Runkel, MABS-12 & LCPL William K. Shoup, MABS-12 were killed in C-130 crash out of country.

October 3, 1966: CPL John M. Hens, MABS-12 was KIA guarding ground medical assistance mission.

January 7, 1967: SSGT Alan F. Schaefer, MABS-12 was killed - cause unknown.

February 12, 1967: PFC Kevin J. Carroll, MABS-12, died of accidental weapon discharge.

December 3, 1967: LCPL Louis Z. Silverii, MABS-12, died of burns due to fuel spill accident.
VMA-223 Bulldogs rotated to Japan.

May 8, 1968: CPL James E. Lott, MATCU-67 was killed in rocket attack on Chu Lai AB.

December 17, 1968: SGT Mancol R. Clifton, MABS-12 was killed in C-123 crash taking off from Chu Lai.

December 21, 1972: CPL Michael C. Smartt, MABS-12, died of accidental GSW Bien Hoa AB.

January 26, 1973: PFC Mark J. Miller, MABS-12was killed in rocket attack on Bien Hoa AB
Based on the Coffelt Database, it would appear that Miller is the last Marine to die of hostile causes in the Vietnam war.

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