BOSTON, LEO SIDNEY Remains Returned 07/2011 Name: Leo Sidney Boston Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force Unit: 602 Tactical Fighter Squadron Date of Birth: 12 May 1935 Home City of Record: Canon City CO Date of Loss: 29 April 1966 Country of Loss: North Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 212000N 1041500E (VJ740404) Status (in 1973): Missing in Action Category: 4 Acft/Vehicle/Ground: A1E Refno: 0319 Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK 2011. REMARKS: SYNOPSIS: The Douglas A1 Skyraider ("Spad") is a highly maneuverable, propeller driven aircraft designed as a multipurpose attack bomber or utility aircraft. The E model generally carried two crewmen. The A1 was first used by the Air Force in its Tactical Air Command to equip the first Air Commando Group engaged in counterinsurgency operations in South Vietnam, and later used in a variety of roles, ranging from multi-seat electronic intelligence gathering to Navy antisubmarine warfare and rescue missions. The venerable fighter aircraft was retired in the spring of 1968 and had flown in more than twenty model variations, probably more than any other U.S. combat aircraft. The general procedure for a rescue escort entailed two A1 aircraft flying directly to the search area to look for sign of the downed crewmen while two other A1s escorted the rescue helicopter to the area. If it was necessary, the A1s would attack enemy in the area with bombs, rockets and cannon fire so that the helicopter could land. Capt. Leo S. Boston was the pilot of an A1E aircraft which was on a search and rescue mission when he was reported missing. His aircraft, the lead plane in a flight of two, departed Ubon Airfield, Thailand, and became separated from the other aircraft during the mission. No visual contact was made and no radio transmissions were received from him. The last known location of the flight was about 5 miles west of the Black River in Son La Province, North Vietnam. The object of Boston's search is unknown. There are several pilots missing from this general vicinity on that day. Leo Boston was continued in a missing status until 27 April 1978 when his status was changed to presumed dead. During the time he was maintained missing, he was promoted to the rank of Colonel. Nearly 2500 Americans remain missing or otherwise unaccounted for in Vietnam. Since the war ended, over 10,000 reports concerning missing Americans in Southeast Asia have been received by the U.S. Government. Many experts are completely convinced that hundreds of Americans are still held captive. One set of critics say that the U.S. has done little to address the issue of live POWs, preferring the politically safer issue of remains return. Others place the blame on the Vietnamese, for using the issue of POW/MIA to their political advantage. Regardless of blame, no living American has returned through the efforts of negotiations between the countries, and the reports continue to pour in. Are we doing enough to bring these men home?
It's been 45 years since Bethany Boston-Johnson saw her
father, Col. Leo "Sid" Boston, an Air Force
pilot who went missing during a search-and-rescue mission in the Vietnam War.