blood chit issued to pilots
February 12, 2024
My itinerary for my trip to Laos and Vietnam is completed. It is an intensive process coordinating flights between three countries (includes Thailand), locating and booking hotels, determining transportation, and more!
With the assistance of an expert who has the knowledge to plot and update coordinates I now have professional quality maps of the locations I will visit in Laos. Admittedly, mapping coordinates is not my “strong suit” but vitally important to locating points of interest. A new point of interest is what has been identified as the likely the crash site of Colonel Luna’s F-4 Phantom D based on images acquired 10 days after he was shot down. While not of specific interest since he and his back seat pilot ejected before the jet crashed, it does aid in the overall identification of uncorrelated aircraft in the area. Most crash sites were scavenged through the last 50 years, but sometimes small remnants of aircraft are found.
The Go Fund Me account that I established has surpassed my initial and subsequent goals. I am grateful for the interest in my mission to provide humanitarian support to the people of Kok Mak, Laos. Due to the amount of support I will be able to provide food, water, supplies to the nearby village of Kok Nok, and most likely a village (to be determined) in Khammouane Province where we will try to obtain information on the loss of another pilot.
December 29, 2023
I am currently in the process of planning a trip to Laos and Vietnam in 2024.
My goals for this trip are:
- return to the village of Kok Mak with food, water, toys, educational materials, personal items (toothbrush, first aid supplies)
- interview elders in another village near the area where Colonel Luna was last known alive
- return to the area where Colonel Luna was last known alive
- travel to Khammouane Province Laos with the daughter of a pilot who is still MIA since 1971
- travel to Hanoi Vietnam to visit the war museum. In the war museum are many artifacts from the Vietnam War including (at least at one time) the blood chit of the pilot whose daughter is accompanying me. This would be an opportunity to try to determine if any equipment assigned to Colonel Luna is stored or displayed in the museum.
When I went to Laos in March 2023 several of my followers on social media asked how they could help the village people in Kok Mak. I am considering starting a Go Fund Me page prior to my next trip. For those who want to be a small part of what I’m doing in Laos this is a way they may contribute to food, water, etc. While these supply costs are minimal by U.S. standards they do add to the overall cost of my trips to Southeast Asia which I totally fund myself.
MORE UPDATES TO BE POSTED AS THEY ARE AVAILABLE