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Air Force Lt. Col. Charles M. Walling

Airmen Missing from Vietnam War Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of two servicemen, missing in action from the Vietnam War, have been identified and are being returned to their families for burial with full military honors.

            Air Force Lt. Col. Charles M. Walling of Phoenix, Ariz., and Maj. Aado Kommendant of Lakewood, N.J., will be buried as a group at Arlington National Cemetery on Aug. 8 — the 46th anniversary of the crash that took their lives.  Walling was individually buried on June 15, at Arlington National Cemetery.

On Aug. 8, 1966, Walling and Kommendant were the crew of an F-4C aircraft that crashed while on a close air support mission over Song Be Province, Vietnam.  Other Americans in the area reported seeing the aircraft crash and no parachutes being deployed.  Search and rescue efforts were not successful in the days following the crash.

In 1992, a joint U.S.-Socialist Republic of Vietnam (S.R.V.) team investigated the crash site and interviewed a local Vietnamese citizen who had recovered aircraft pieces from the site.  In 1994, a joint U.S.-S.R.V. team excavated the site and recovered a metal identification tag bearing Walling’s name, and other military equipment.  In 2010, the site was excavated again, and additional evidence was recovered, including human remains.

Scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used circumstantial and material evidence, along with forensic identification tools including mitochondrial DNA in the identification of the remains.

For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call 703-699-1169.

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About Posted by Susan Bainbridge

At age 6, Susan was destined to be a journalist and photographer. In 1980, Susan founded Bainbridge News and The Bainbridge Chronicle Newspaper. Bainbridge News specializes in Military and National Politics, including Military Funerals and Burials and Political Funerals and Burials. Susan has covered the White House, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. She has covered every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama. Recognized for her versatility, Susan has also covered finance, crime, civil rights events, marches, sports, musical events and more. In 1990, she established Bainbridge Photography, an On-Location photography company. In addition to military and political events, including Military and Political funerals and burials, Bainbridge Photography expanded into covering ALL funerals and burials, receptions, weddings, real estate, inventory, insurance, portrait, head shot, pets, fire and Hazmat. Miss Bainbridge believes in going the extra mile. "My Clients always come first." In 1980, Susan began her career in Washington, D.C., working for WMZQ Radio as a reporter and guest hostess from 1980 to 1985. Intrigued by radio, Susan wanted to write, freelancing for radio, television and print newspapers, including AP, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Northern Virginia Sun, The Press-Republicanand The Bainbridge Chronicle (established by Susan Bainbridge). In 1986, Susan worked at WDCA-TV Channel 20 as a guest hostess for "Eye On Washington." From 1990 to 1994, Susan reported and anchored for "The Arlington Weekly News." Additionally, she produced a segment for the G. Gordon Liddy Radio Show. A prolific writer, while in high school in 1977, Bainbridge wrote an episode for NBC's "Little House on The Prairie" entitled "Laura's Best Friend." Though the show's producers did not use the script then, NBC producers encouraged Susan to pursue a writing and journalism career. Susan is a member of the National Press Club, the National Press Photographer's Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Susan Bainbridge's recognitions include from former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton, former First Lady Nancy Reagan, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the late actor Lorne Greene, among many others. BAINBRIDGE NEWS was founded in 1980 by Susan Bainbridge (a sixth generation writer), a third generation journalist, a first generation photographer and a fourth generation entrepreneur. She is the first generation to establish a news business. Bainbridge News is dedicated in honor of Miss Bainbridge's late grandfather and idol, Mark S. Watson (The Baltimore Sun editor and war correspondent from 1920 to his death in 1966).

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