Rose, Luther Lee, CMSgt

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Last Rank
Chief Master Sergeant
Last Primary AFSC/MOS
111X0-Defensive Aerial Gunner
Last AFSC Group
Primary Unit
1965-1966, 14th Air Commando Wing
Service Years
1954 - 1966
Chief Master Sergeant

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by A3C Michael S. Bell to remember Rose, Luther Lee, CMSgt.

If you knew or served with this Airman and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
Nha Trang AB

Casualty Date
Jun 03, 1966
Hostile, Died while Missing
Air Loss, Crash - Land
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
08E 002

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Vietnam Veterans Memorial
  2012, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page

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Aircrew Enlisted (Senior)

 Unit Assignments
4th Air Commando Squadron14th Air Commando Wing
  1965-1966, 4th Air Commando Squadron
  1965-1966, 14th Air Commando Wing
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1966-1966 Non-operation sorties/Reconnaissance missions over Laos
 My Aircraft/Missiles
AC-47 Spooky/Puff  
  1966-2003, AC-47 Spooky/Puff
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity


On 3 June 1966, Capt. Theodore E. Kryszak, pilot; 1st Lt. Russell D. Martin, co-pilot; Lt. Col. Harding E. Smith, navigator; TSgt. Harold E. Mullins, flight engineer; then TSgt. Luther L. Rose, aerial gunner; and SSgt. Ervin Warren, loadmaster; comprised the crew of a AC47 gunship that was conducting an armed reconnaissance mission to locate and interdict communist activity moving along the Ho Chi Minh Trail, Khammouane Province, Laos. The Puff was under the operational control of the onsite Forward Air Controller (FAC).


At 2125 hours, the FAC and gunship were operating along Route 912, less then 20 miles southwest of the Ban Karai Pass, one of two major ports of entry into the Ho Chi Minh Trail used by the North Vietnamese when they infiltrated into Laos. At a point about 10 miles east of the town of Ban Pha Philang, the gunship was firing on an enemy target when it was struck by hostile enemy ground fire. Capt. Kryszak transmitted that his aircraft was on fire and flames could be seen in the right wing root. Fire soon engulfed the entire right side of the aircraft and burning pieces began to fall away from it. Capt. Kryszak issued a bailout order to his crew, which was heard over the radio by the FAC.

After the bailout order was given, the FAC watched as the gunship continued in straight and level flight for approximately 5 to 10 seconds before turning nose over and crashing in a high angle dive before impacting the ground 30 miles northeast of Tchepone. The FAC reported he did not observe hostile ground fire directed at the AC47. Further, in the darkness, he saw no parachutes and heard no emergency radio beepers emanating from the dense jungle below.


The FAC immediately requested a search and rescue (SAR) mission be initiated. The airborne force located the gunship's tail assembly, but no evidence of the crew was found in or around the wreckage. At the time the search operation was terminated, Theodore Kryszak, Russell Martin, Harding Smith, Harold Mullins, Ervin Warren and Luther Rose were reported as Missing in Action.


Mattie, Kenneth (Ken), SMSgt  
67 kb
Luther L Roes

I served with Rose as Fire Control Tech, 32350G from 1955 to 1960 at Ellsworth AFB SD. We were both 2 strippers (We both then transfered to Amarillo AFB TX. We were both Fire Control Technicians ( AFSC 32350G) and arrived in Amarillo in Feb 1960. He left in the early 60's as a SSgt to become a gunner. I left 1966 and lost track of him. I knew him well and work side by side for many years.
Ken Mattie, SMSgt retired

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