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William M. Smith

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This Page Is Dedicated To
William M. Smith


In Memory of William M. Smith

William Smith

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Thanks to Joni's Patriotic Graphics.

  • Name: William Mark Smith
  • Rank/Branch: E3/US Army
  • Unit: Company B, 3rd Battalion, 8th Infantry, 4th Infantry Division
  • Date of Birth: 02 April 1949 (New Bedford MA)
  • Home City of Record: Middleboro MA
  • Date of Loss: 03 March 1969
  • Country of Loss: South Vietnam
  • Loss Coordinates: 142028N 1073610E (YA777848)
  • Status (in 1973): Missing in Action
  • Category: 2
  • Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground
  • Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing)

SYNOPSIS: PFC William M. Smith was a rifleman from Company B, 3rd Battalion, 8th Infantry, 4th Infantry Division. On March 3, 1969, his unit was located in Kontum Province, South Vietnam about 25 miles east of the city of Kontum. Elements of the 4th Infantry Division were on their way to rejoin the main body when Smith fell down an embankment.

Members of the column in which Smith was located went down to find him, but before they could locate him, someone shouted that PFC Smith had rejoined the head of the column. It was not until later that it was determined that Smith was missing. A patrol doubled back to look for him in the area where he fell down the embankment, but he was not found. Smith was declared Missing in Action.
In 1973, 591 American prisoners were released from communist prison camps and two of them reported that Smith had been captured by the Vietnamese, and killed on the trail to North Vietnam. Although no Americans witnessed the murder, one of the North Vietnamese medics told the two prisoners that Smith had died on the trail. No information had been received regarding Smith's fate from the time he was missing until the spring of 1973. The Vietnamese also listed Smith as having died in captivity, although they have never returned his remains.
Several other returnees reported in their debriefings that Smith was being taken by a Viet Cong prison guard to a latrine. The POWs heard him shout, and were later told by prison guards that he fell and hit his head and died. None of these POWs actually witnessed Smith's death, but the statements were considered sufficient to concluded the evidence of death.
It has long been believed that the Vietnamese have much more information relating to those Americans who were killed and left behind than they have given the U.S. In fact, credible Congressional testimony indicates that the Vietnamese have American remains "stockpiled" to be returned at politically strategic intervals.
The same Congressional witness stated that he knew of live American POWs still in Vietnam after the war was over. This information is non considered credible. It is one of nearly 1000 eye-witness reports of live American POWs that have been debunked in one way or another by the U.S. intelligence community.
Alarmingly, the number of total reports received is nearly 10,000, and less than 20% of them have been proven false. The balance have been accurate, although many of them relate to Americans already accounted for. Further, the reports continue to come in, and many are convinced that hundreds of Americans still remain in enemy hands. It's time we brought our men home.

Thanks to Ron Fleischer.


"All Biographical and loss information on POWs provided by Operation Just Cause have been supplied by Chuck and Mary Schantag of POWNET. Please check with POWNET regularly for updates."

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Picture of William Smith Thanks to Craig.

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This page has been visited times. Since October 5, 1998.

This page last updated on April 17, 2000