BOGARD, LONNIE PAT
Rank / Branch:
MAJOR, U.S. AIR FORCE
Date of Birth:
See MIA Report
BODY NOT RETURNED
Awards & Decorations:
See Alphabetical list
list by County
LONNIE PAT BOGARD, MAJOR, U.S. AIR FORCE, MIDLAND, MIDLAND COUNTY, TEXAS
AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart, Air Medal, Air Force Commendation's Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal
Lonnie Pat was from Metairie, Louisiana, a suburb of New Orleans. His wife, Sue Burdette, met him when they were students at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Pat was in the ROTC program at Oklahom State and upon graduation with a B.S. degree in Air Science, he accepted a commission as a 2LT in the Air Force. Pat completed flight school at Reese Air Force Base in Lubbock, Texas as a F-4 fighter pilot. According to Sue, his wife, he liked the F-4, as he thought it was safer than the hot, single-engined F105 and he thought it was certainly more glamorous than flying transport aircraft.
Ubon Air Force Base-Thailand-1971-72
Pat had completed a previous tour in 1967-68 flying out of Cam Rahn Bay AFB. He began his second tour in the Vietnam theatre in 1971 and was assigned to Ubon AFB, Thailand. He was flying against targets in Laos and North Vietnam. On May 12, 1972, just one day after his 30th birthday, on a night mission over Laos, then Captain Lonnie P. Bogard and 1st Lt. William H. Ostermeyer departed Ubon AFB in a F-4D, tail number 66-8799 on a "Night Owl" flight. This was a fast FAC mission along the Ho Chi Minh Trail in southern Laos. The flight went as planned until shortly after the F4D completed a scheduled in-flight refueling session. At that point, with the F-4D somewhere in the vicinity of the Ban Kari Pass, radio contact was lost. SAR efforts failed to locate wreckage or either crewman. Not a trace of the plane nor or the two man crew has been found to this date. There was a presumptive finding of "Killed In Action/Body Not Returned" on July 26, 1978 by the Defense Department.
Name: Lonnie Pat Bogard
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Unit: 435th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Ubon AF TH
Date of Birth: 11 May 1942
Home City of Record: Metairie LA
Date of Loss: 12 May 1972
Country of Loss: Laos
Loss Coordinates: 171200N 1960900E (XE222018)
Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
Other Personnel in Incident: William H. Ostermeyer (missing)
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 30 April 1990 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews.
SYNOPSIS: Capt. Lonnie P. Bogard, had celebrated his birthday the day before he was assigned a night low-level reconnaissance mission along the Ho Chi Minh trail on May 12, 1972. Bogard was the pilot, and 1Lt. William H. Ostermeyer the electronics officer comprising the crew of an F4D Phantom. The mission went according to plan until after a scheduled mid-air refueling, after which radio contact was lost with the aircraft. At last contact, Bogard and Ostermeyer were near the Ban Karai Pass in Savannakhet Province, Laos.
The Ban Karai Pass was one of several passageways through the mountainous border of Vietnam and Laos. American aircraft flying from Thailand to missions over North Vietnam flew through them regularly, and many aircraft were lost. On the Laos side of the border coursed the "Ho Chi Minh Trail", a road heavily traveled by North Vietnamese troops moving materiel and personnel to their destinations through the relative safety of neutral Laos. The return ratio of men lost in and around the passes is far lower than that of those men lost in more populous areas. This is partly due to the extremely rugged terrain and resulting difficulty in recovery.
The families of Bogard and Ostermeyer understood that the two could have been killed in the incident or captured by either Pathet Lao forces or North Vietnamese.
Sue Burdette came to Midland in 1982 to accept a teaching job with the Midland Independent School district. She also taught biology, anatomy and physiology at Midland College. She was active in the Permian Basin Vietnam Memorial and is now retired and continues to live in Midland.
Crash Site May Be Located:
In November of 2006, the family received word that a crash site located at latitude 17119 N and Longitude 1061235E may be that of an F4 carrying Lonnie Pat Bogard and William H. Ostermeyer. This site is located in what was once North Vietnam just north of what was the demilitarized zone (DMZ) close to the Laotian border. Until this date, it was believed that the F4, piloted by Lonnie Pat Bogard and navigated by William H. Ostermeyer, was lost in Laos. As of 2009, the crash site has received a second verification of the missing men's aircraft. The site is scheduled to be excavated in 2009 or after.
Memorial Headstone-Arlington National Cemetery