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The Last POW of the Vietnam War

Air Force officer Charles Shelton was classified as a prisoner of war until 1994, making him the last official POW of the Vietnam war. His plane was shot down on April 29th 1965 during a secret reconnaissance mission over Laos. For years his family tried to find out more about his fate.

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  1. fooman
    fooman Jan 14, 2014

    I have known families that have members that have been declared MIA for over three decades and found via DNA, bone fragments, personal effects.....This is not helpful to those who families survived this terrible war and those who died in it. The youngest of the MIA's would be nearly 70 now and have been in captivity for over 40 years of their lives in some of the worst conditions in the history of warfare. I am sorry to say it but; THESE MEN ARE GONE, DEAL WITH IT AND LET THEM AND YOURSELVES GO. Jay Perry USNvet, son of Vietnam USNvet, brother of USNvet friends of several POW families.

  2. dillen41
    dillen41 Jan 22, 2014

    My grandfather Col. David Hrdlicka was held captive with Charles at the same time in Laos, and although they would like to claim something as "official" or "last" with the evidence still out there, men are STILL in captivity. They may be getting older and be fighting time but they still live, left behind, and forgotten except by the families who still want answers.

  3. 12052331
    12052331 Jan 22, 2014

    Why are the services not helping the 62,000 Homeless American Veterans cold and hungry in the United States. The VA is surpose to be helping but no body is going out to find them. The freeloaders in Washington need to get off their butts and find them. You can look in vacant buildings, under bridges, in their cars having no home, by fires trying to get warm, etc. Some may have disabilities that they have put in a claim for but it takes more than a year to get it approved. Many of them may have awards that don't count any more, WHY

  4. bayman59
    bayman59 Jan 22, 2014

    Communist treatment of prisoners has been the worse of any enemies we have ever fought. I believe that Vietnam has kept some American prisoners and never told anyone about them so they could have a bargaining chip if we ever went against them again. Most likely our government knows this and they also have never told us.

  5. 16558656
    16558656 Jan 23, 2014

    I, HAVE TOLD MANY TIME 'S :"THANKS FOR YOUR-SERVICE"!.IT'S IS A STATEMENT THAT HIT YOU AND YOU FEEL LIKE SAYING SOME FOOLISH LIKE I, LOVE MY COUNTRY , OF COURSE YOU LOVE YOUR COUNTRY...WE SAY THIS COMEMT TO CIVILIANS....YET AS MEMBERS AND BROTHERS - SISTERS IN ARMS WE SAY TO EACH OTHER ;PERSON-TO-PERSON SOMETHING EVEN MORE FOOLISH ;"YOU SEE THIS DOLLAR IN MY HAND THE DAY THAT UNCLE SAM !STOP PAYING ME MY SERVICE STOP !.WE SHOULD JUST BE HONEST AND SAY BOTH TO THOSE WHO SAY THAT STATEMENT AND TO EACH OTHER THANKS...THANKS ...YOU !.SO THANKS TO YOUR DAD FOR HIS SERVICE....!.

  6. Legal127
    Legal127 Jan 26, 2014

    As a Combat Vietnam Veteran that was deployed for my 1st tour of duty as a Crew Cheif on F4 Phantom II's around the same time that Lt Col Shelton's aircraft was shot down in 1965. I personally feel for his family, and his children since I had lost many friends, that also never came back from their missions, and declared MIA/POW. And, like them, always wondering their true fate. I also have never gave up, and that our government would find them, and bring closure of 'Never leaving a soldier, on the field of Battle'. Military Law may have an expiration date of when one is declared to be 'Dead', but for a Combat Soldier, there should never be one, in making all efforts to find our missing. The US allows trade's with Vietnam, that only reinforces what big business got out of that war, and those the fought and died for it, got nothing! Even today, the Vietnam Veteran has had to fight for everything they ever got, including an aspirn from the VA. And, the treatment they receive. The only real Honor that these veterans got was from the American Public, and their Families that put up Memorials, like Col Shelton's, in Kentucky, and the most visited Memorial in Washington, the WALL!

  7. Legal127
    Legal127 Jan 26, 2014

    To: Lt Col Shelton's children: I wish to share this short film an song about our Fallen. I hope you enjoy it, and brings you some peace, that your Dad is now in a place (if he truely has passed on)where Special Soldier's go, when they 'Gave All'! He will never be Forgotten, and you can be assured of that! Unfortunately, they won't let me make it a Hyperlink, so please 'COPY' it and put it in your URL Browser (Exactly as it is) then click 'GO', or to view: And, then Play. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySHg2a0hcaY&list=RDnO3rrPHQwbs I am personally Proud, that you have Honored your Dad on this Site. I also "Thank Him For His Service"! He was a Hero! 47th, 43rd, 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron's, served in Vietnam 1965-67, with the above in the, Tactical (Combat) Air Command. While serving with the 555th TFS, (in my 2nd Tour) we shot down more Mig's enemy aircraft than any other unit in Vietnam. Called 'Mig Killer's'!

  8. 16261688
    16261688 Feb 12, 2014

    I learned to love the uniform based on the kindness they showed, a stranger to his own hometown, misplaced by the country's lies, and its injustices that compliment it's leaders. Today, I know it was not just the country, but how the family treated them too! How to stand by them and never give up, even while they persecute You! there pain was so great, it came home and slithered within their fate....as some do detest PTSD was hidden from their rightful nest. What has been done can never be erased when suicide took away the pain...those of us left can never forget the sorrow and the loss of heaven's call for rest. May God Be with You! I am!

  9. 32692470
    32692470 Aug 02, 2014

    SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS.

  10. 12318701
    12318701 Sep 03, 2016

    A very well done segment on Col. Shelton and his Family, whom i have known for many years. It is a tragedy how the US Government lied to not only this family but so many more. I dedicated my book "BOHICA" to Col. Shelton and his family, I also was the person who found her dead in her San Diego Home so long ago along with the Pike Daughters, Shannon and Denise Pike who also lot there father COMDR Dennis Pike. We found her body in the backyard garden shot to death, she and her children are wonderful people.

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